The Minister of Environment and Natural Resources (MMARN), Miguel Ceara Hatton, led the launch of “Dominican Republic 30×30”, an organizational and operational strategy that seeks to conserve and manage 30% of the land and marine area under the category of protected areas and other protection mechanisms, in accordance with the Global Framework for Biodiversity.
The initiative, which relies on technology, knowledge, data management and strong governance, contemplates the definition of a path for the Dominican Republic to achieve effective protection of 30% of its oceans, lands and ecosystems, in order to guarantee biodiversity, preserve natural resources and mitigate the impacts of climate change.
During the launch of the project, Minister Ceara Hatton invited officials and employees of the institution to assume a total commitment to the initiative.
“All my life I have worked on the basis of commitment to improve this country and this is a great opportunity to continue to do so,” said the official, after specifying that, although he is the general, troops are needed to assume responsibility with determination and continuous effort.
He indicated that the challenge is not only to design the project, but to create the conditions for it to be executed and for the Dominican Republic to see results that improve the quality of life of Dominicans.
“Let’s work on this project, which is an opportunity to improve our country, I invite you to join, I invite you to work tirelessly,” he said with emotion, before the staff present at the event held in the Multipurpose Room of the institution and those who connected digitally through the Zoom platform.
The objectives of the initiative include: strengthening the management of protected areas and expanding their surface area; ensuring sustainable practices in fisheries and agriculture; strengthening and diversifying access to financial instruments; promoting sustainable tourism and generating sound governance and regulatory mechanisms.
The project also includes strengthening the training and awareness of the communities and economic sectors, the investment of economic resources, and the definition of a plan for effective management of all protected areas.
During the launching activity, the organizational structure was presented, which will operationalize and manage the financing that will implement all the mechanisms and actions aimed at achieving the goal.
This structure is made up of several work fronts, including Terrestrial and Marine Space; Standards and Regulations; Finance, Climate Change and Change Management.
Each work front presented the ideas of initiatives that would be materializing after the diagnostic process, a process that takes two weeks and that should be completed in one month and that the digital data and monitoring platform is fully operational.
In his speech, the Vice Minister of Protected Areas and Biodiversity, Federico Franco, highlighted that “Dominican Republic 30×30” includes a readjustment in the Ministry’s temperament to preserve the protected areas, “our true chests of life, as we like to call them”.
He recalled that the country already has 26% of its terrestrial territory under the protection criteria, so increasing it to 30% will be an achievable goal that will be accompanied by strengthening the care of the existing ones.
The marine area is the most extensive part of the territory and only has approximately 11% of its surface area protected. The Vice Ministry of Coastal and Marine Resources is working on a technical and scientific proposal that seeks to conserve large ocean areas and double the marine protected area.
The Vice-Ministry of Climate Change and Sustainability will work actively and in an articulated manner with one goal: conservation, to reduce the country’s vulnerability to climate change, said Vice-Minister Milagros De Camps.
Dahiana Goris, director of Environmental Regulations, informed that the team of lawyers that make up her department will act as a cog in all the initiatives that will be carried out in the project, to make the processes more efficient and guarantee compliance with the law and citizens’ rights.
Also speaking at the activity were Yuderka Arrendell, Director of Planning and Development; Gilberto Valdez, Administrative and Financial Coordinator; Junior Pujols, in charge of Quality Management, and Jonathan Delance, Coordinator of the Vice Ministry of Coastal and Marine Resources.