The Caribbean Biodiversity Fund (CBF) on February 18 started its first regional activity under the Caribbean Regional Architecture for Biodiversity (CRAB) Project in Punta Cana, Dominican Republic.
The workshop was attended by representatives of the National Conservation Trust Funds with whom CBF has signed an agreement, along with other partners such as: the Laboratory of Ecology, Evolution and Interactions of Amazonian Systems from French Guiana, the Regional Activity Centre for the Protocol Concerning Specially Protected Areas and Wildlife for the Wider Caribbean Region (UNEP-CEP), The Nature Conservancy, the Organisation of Eastern Caribbean States (OECS) and representatives from CBF and AfD.
The workshop provided the participants with an opportunity to exchange and network on topics such as the governance and operationalisation of the Conservation Trust Funds and their sustainable finance mechanism. Capacity building sessions included topics such as mangrove and coral reef restoration and the standards related to the Environmental and Social Management Framework.
CARIBBEAN STATES DEPEND ON BIODIVERSITY, NATURAL RESOURCES
The CRAB project has a timeframe of five years, in which more capacity building is foreseen in themes such as sustainable finance mechanisms for Conservation Trust Funds and various biodiversity conservation topics such as on Bio Blue trade value chains.
The CRAB Project is designed to contribute to the development of sustainable and sufficient resources for the conservation of ecosystems in the Caribbean Region. As Small Island Developing States, Caribbean nations depend heavily on their biodiversity and natural resources for economic and social development.
Funding for the CRAB Project totals €7 million, with €4 million from the French Global Environmental Facility (FFEM) and the French Agency for Development (AFD), €500,000 from the German Government through the German Development Bank (KFW), and with the CBF itself contributing €2.5 million.
“By gathering 11 National Conservation Trust Funds from the Caribbean, and providing them with long-term financing under its endowment mechanism, the Caribbean Biodiversity Fund presents an unique financial architecture,” said Quentin Lajus, task team leader at the AFD.
PROJECT TO BE IMPLEMENTED OVER 5-YEAR PERIOD
“We believe that this architecture has a strong relevance and ability to address the challenges of the conservation of natural ecosystems encountered both at the regional and national levels. That’s why we decided to fund the CRAB project, in order to strengthen the CBF and the NCTF capacities and increase their regional partnerships, including with the French territories.”
The CRAB Project will support the development of nature-based economic activities, including a post-COVID response for the benefit of the most affected communities across the region. Started in July 2022, the project will be implemented over a five-year period.
“The CBF is pleased to have worked with our partners in France to be at the stage of hosting this first regional event under the CRAB Project. Over the next five years, we will be working to increase the capacity of Caribbean Sustainable Finance Architecture, which comprises the CBF and Caribbean National Conservation Trust Funds (NCTFs) to become key players in regional biodiversity issues,” said CEO of the CBF Karen McDonald Gayle.