Organization of Eastern Caribbean States
Integrated landscape approaches and investments in sustainable land management in the Organization of Eastern Caribbean States
Members of the Organisation of Eastern Caribbean States:
- Antigua and Barbuda
- British Virgin Islands
- Saint Lucia
- Saint Kitts and Nevis
- Saint Vincent and the Grenadines
Partners: Member States and relevant national agencies, CARICOM, other organizations and CSOs.
Key thematic areas
The project will address a variety of specific challenges in its member states. Activities include agriculture sector planning and development; agroforestry and ecosystem-based approaches toward water and food security; integrated watershed management to reduce land degradation; ecosystem and biodiversity restoration; and eco-tourism product development.
Since the decline of the banana and sugar industries, which had protected against soil erosion through vegetation cover, the Organization of Eastern Caribbean States member states have suffered from land degradation. This is contributing to biodiversity loss and increased vulnerability to floods and landslides. The region is also highly vulnerable to the effects of climate change, particularly rising sea levels and more intense tropical storms and hurricanes. These disasters demonstrate the need to build resilience through mitigation and adaptation measures.
To preserve ecosystems and ecosystem services, to bolster food security and to improve climate change mitigation and adaptation through sustainable landscape management.
The Organization of Eastern Caribbean States member states form a continuous archipelago of 11 small island nations, territories and departments across the Lesser Antilles of the Caribbean. Most of the islands are mountainous because of their volcanic origin, with a diverse range of terrestrial and marine ecosystems, including coral reefs, mangroves, forests and scrubland. Seven of the 11 member states have a total area of less than 500 square kilometers. Historically dominated by the banana and sugar industries, the region now depends on tourism and hospitality as the mainstay of its economy. Some member states also derive much of their gross domestic product from financial services. Due to their small size and high population densities, the islands rely heavily on imports of food, fossil fuels and raw materials, making them vulnerable to external shocks and natural disasters, as demonstrated by the devastation of Hurricanes Irma and Maria in 2017, as well as the COVID-19 pandemic.
The project aims to strengthen sustainable land management in the Organization of Eastern Caribbean States member states through integrated landscape approaches. It has three main objectives: (i) to improve natural resource management, (ii) to enhance climate change mitigation and adaptation, and (iii) to achieve food security through sustainable agriculture. To achieve these goals, the project will contribute to the development of climate-smart and sustainable farming and promote cross-sector approaches to land use planning and management.
The project entails three main outputs: (i) to field-test a range of initiatives that reconcile different land uses in a landscape by balancing economic, social and biophysical considerations. These initiatives will target challenges, such as climate change adaptation, ecosystem restoration, land degradation, drought and pollution; (ii) to promote improved land governance and management systems by enhancing cross-sectoral cooperation and facilitating the participation of local stakeholders in land-related decisions; and (iii) to enhance the capacities of actors and institutions for sustainable landscape management. This includes strengthening knowledge, tools and engagement to build partnerships across government institutions, the private sector and civil society.
Cornelius Isaac – Cornelius.firstname.lastname@example.org