Delegation of the European Union 
to the United States

EU hails Jamaica's '3 million trees in three years' project, reaffirms support for country's climate change fight

31/03/2020 - 01:19
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Jolita Butkeviciene, Director for Latin America and the Caribbean at the European Commission's Directorate-General for International Cooperation and Development has recommitted the support of the European Union (EU) to Jamaica’s efforts to build resilience to climate change.

Ms. Butkeviciene indicated that the EU’s current allocation of €15m (approximately $J2.5 billion) under the Budget Support Programme to Jamaica to fight the degradation of Jamaica’s forests is part of this thrust. She said the European Union is committed to fighting climate change across the globe and here in Jamaica and that “the best way to do this is by preserving our natural resources and the first natural resource that comes to mind are our forests”.

The Director for Latin America and the Caribbean at the European Commission’s Directorate-General for International Cooperation and Development, Jolita Butkeviciene (at the podium) addressing the Media Campaign Launch for the European Union funded Budget Support Programme for the Forest Sector, titled “Addressing Environmental and Climate Change challenges through Improved Forest Management in Jamaica” on Monday (March 9) at the Tree House conference centre at Hope Botanical Gardens in Kingston. Listening with interest are from left Acting Chief Executive Officer and Conservator of Forests, Rainee Oliphant and Head of the Delegation of the European Union (EU) to Jamaica, the Turks and Caicos, the Cayman Islands and The Bahamas, Ambassador Malgorzata Wasilewska

 

The EU official praised the Jamaican Government’s initiative to plant three million trees over the next three years, “It’s something that really raises awareness and builds an all-of-society-approach,” she said.

She was speaking recently (March 9) at the launch of the media campaign for the EU funded Budget Support Programme for the Jamaican Forest Sector, aimed at addressing environmental and climate change challenges through improved forest management.

The money will be used to assist with the implementation of the Forest Policy for Jamaica (2017) and the National Forest Management and Conservation Plan, 2016-2026.  A component of the support is a three-year €850,000 (J$128 million) technical assistance programme.

The Forestry Department’s Acting Chief Executive Officer and Conservator of Forests, Rainee Oliphant said her Agency is very excited about the technical assistance, which is being provided by the EU, a component of which will facilitate the development of a business model for the organisation. “We want to go beyond being a technical repository of information and become a revenue generating organisation as well. It is a good time for the local forest sector”.

“The visibility programme will bring much needed attention to our forest sector generally, and the work of the Forestry Department specifically” she added.

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Acting Chief Executive Officer and Conservator of Forests, Rainee Oliphant (left), greets the Head of the Delegation of the European Union (EU) to Jamaica, the Turks and Caicos, the Cayman Islands and The Bahamas, Ambassador Malgorzata Wasilewska (left) during the Media Campaign Launch for the European Union funded Budget Support Programme for the Forest Sector, titled “Addressing Environmental and Climate Change challenges through Improved Forest Management in Jamaica”. The Director for Latin America and the Caribbean at the European Commission’s Directorate-General for International Cooperation and Development, Jolita Butkeviciene (centre) looks on. The event was held on Monday (March 9) The event was held at the Tree House conference centre at Hope Botanical Gardens in Kingston.

A jingle and videos showcasing the beauty and uniqueness of Jamaica’s forests and encouraging their preservation were unveiled during the launch and will anchor the public outreach campaign of the visibility programme. It will build awareness of the actions of the Forestry Department and the forest sector by engaging communities living in forest dependent areas for their protection.

Click this link for to view the videos.

The event was also attended by the Head of the Delegation of the EU to Jamaica, the Turks and Caicos, the Cayman Islands and the Bahamas, Ambassador Malgorzata Wasilewska. Spain’s Ambassador to Jamaica, His Excellency Josep Maria Bosch Bessa and officials of the European Union, the Forestry Department and the Forest Sector.

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