A. Title of Proposed Project Development of a Protected Areas Database for Jamaica

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1 A. Title of Proposed Project Development of a Protected Areas Database for Jamaica B. Contact Information for Project Manager(s) Name: Sheries Simpson Address:10 Caledonia Avenue, Kingston 5. Country: Jamaica W.I. Telephone: ext Fax: Website: C. Contact information for Managing Institution Institution Name: National Environment and Planning Agency Address: 10 Caledonia Avenue, Kingston 5. Institutional Contact Person Name: Dr. Leary Myers, CEO Telephone: ext Fax: Website: D. If Applicable, a List of other participating Institutions Jamaica Protected Areas Network Jamaica Conservation and Development Trust Montego Bay Marine Park St. James Parish Council St. Catherine Parish Council Forestry Department (Ministry of Agriculture) Institute of Jamaica Fisheries Division (Ministry of Agriculture) Jamaica National Heritage Trust The Nature Conservancy Urban Development Corporation IABIN Focal Point Contact Information Name: Mrs. Dionne Newell Address: East Street, Kingston Country: Jamaica, West Indies Telephone: Fax: Website:

2 Project Summary: Jamaica is in the process of updating the fourteen (14) Development Orders for the parishes of the country. These Development Orders are legal instruments used to guide developments within the island, which are mostly threatening to impact marine and terrestrial Protected Areas. As part of the process, the Agency conducts extensive assessments of the coastal/terrestrial and marine ecosystems, biodiversity, air quality and water quality within the Pas. The information gathered from the assessments however, is not in a structured format for informing the Development Orders. This project will therefore allow for the creation and maintenance of a web-based Protected Areas database for Jamaica which will be compatible with the World Database for Protected Areas (WDPA). The information gathered will also inform processes for PA management which is being developed for the island; as well as management of the PAs monitored by the Forestry Department and the Jamaica National Heritage Trust. Development of a Protected Areas Database for Jamaica Page 1

3 1.0 Project Goals a. To develop a Protected Areas Data Management system for Jamaica b. To improve the collection and management of Protected Areas data in a bid to collate the information that will feed into the preparation of parish Development Orders c. To develop and implement a long term sustainable strategy to periodically update the World Database on Protected Areas (WDPA) 2.0 Project Description As a party to the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD), Jamaica is committed to developing an ecologically-representative network of protected areas designed to conserve at least 10% of the nation s naturally-occurring terrestrial, aquatic and marine flora and fauna. Jamaica s current protected areas system covers approximately 18% of the country s lands as well as 15% of archipelagic waters. Beginning with the Morant and Pedro Cays Act of 1904, the system evolved through legislative acts applied in a largely ad hoc fashion and, as a result, now includes 19 different protected area categories under the jurisdiction of five government agencies. The majority of the areas, however, are managed by the Forestry Department (Ministry of Agriculture), the Jamaica National Heritage Trust (JNHT) and the National Environment and Planning Agency (NEPA), the two organizations responsible for the majority of protected areas in the system (Yugorsky and Sutton 2004) 1. Jamaica is currently addressing the need to reform the present protected areas system to ensure that the country s resources and biodiversity are supported by viable and well-functioning biological processes that are enabled through a robust management system akin to international paradigms. Under divided administrative authority, the current protected areas of Jamaica were largely established independently of each other to capture unique biological attributes and not necessarily in conjunction with one another as a complementary network. The system of protected areas itself encompasses nearly 2000 km2 of terrestrial areas constituting just over 18% of Jamaica s lands as well as approximately 1800 km 2 of marine area or approximately 15% of the country s archipelagic waters. The system encompasses a variety of biologically important features such as ecosystems, biological communities, habitat types as well as plant and animal species. NEPA has the legal responsibility to prepare parish Development Orders in collaboration with the Local Planning Authorities. The general objective of a development order is to control the development of the land in the development order area, and to reserve conservation regions within the protected areas. For the financial years , NEPA will be focusing on the development orders for the parishes of St. Catherine and St. James, two regions where major protected areas are situated. It is the intention of this Project to therefore assist with the 1 Yugorsky, Patrick and A. Sutton Jamaica s Protected Area System Plan Biodiversity Report. Working Paper 1: Categorization of Protected Areas in Jamaica, First Draft. Prepared for the National Environment and Planning Agency and National Environmental Societies Trust. November 3, Development of a Protected Areas Database for Jamaica Page 2

4 formulation of a database management system for protected areas, so that all information related to the areas are presented in a structured way to define development. 2.1 Methodology: The Agency currently does a lot of ecosystem assessments and collates land use data which forms the basis of the environmental component of the development orders, which aids in defining the conservation areas. There exists various data [such as water quality, habitat assessments, air quality, coral reef data, etc.] scattered among the protected areas. With this comprehensive data as a basis, the project will begin to compile metadata information on the protected areas, using two areas as pilots. The data will be formatted using IABIN Standards and made available to stakeholders through the Protected Areas Multi-Agency Committee. As a way of disseminating information to the public, sensitization meeting/workshops as well as presentations will be made to potential information providers and users on the importance of the IABIN project and the immense value that this information will have on biodiversity management. At the end of the project, a series of public education resource materials will be produced and distributed, and the database launched at a workshop which will receive media coverage. 2.2 Project s Value to Institution: NEPA is mandated by law (via the Town & Country Planning Act) to prepare and update development orders for all 14 parishes within the country. The protected areas database will allow for a structured approach to be employed in collecting and collating data collected in the field, which will in turn inform the process of defining conservation areas within the development orders. 2.3 The successful proposal must also provide answers to the following six questions: Comments 1. What are the user communities in your country that would be interested in the products of this project? Natural resource scientists, the National Protected Areas Committee, academia (lecturers and students), Protected Areas/National Parks Managers, Conservation Ecologists, Agricultural sector (Ministry of Agriculture), and the 2. How will the data be updated and maintained into the future? If changes in information are made and new protected areas are created, how will this be carried into the publicly accessible record? general public. Once the database is setup personnel of the Protected Areas Management Branch will be assigned to maintain the database. Information will be shared via NEPA s website which is maintained by the IT and Public Education Branches. 3. How will you comply with IABIN PATN and UNEP-WCMC standards? The preferred method is to use the WDPA Web System, which include all desired fields. (The standards currently used by PATN are the Attribute data structure for the World Database on Protected Areas (WDPA), versions March 2008, developed by UNEP-WCMC, and Dublin Core (for metadata on resources found on the web), in addition to the general IABIN standards. NEPA works closely with the Natural History Division (NHD) of the Institute of Jamaica (IOJ) where the IABIN Focal Point for Jamaica resides. NEPA has also worked with UNEP-WCMC in the past and is familiar with the existing standards. In addition, the agency has an IT branch which has a SQL Database officer who will be dedicated to assisting with the update of metadata Development of a Protected Areas Database for Jamaica Page 3

5 Comments 4. What is your institution s expertise in informatics and Protected Areas data management? 5. How does your institution interact with other institutions in your country that manage Protected Areas data or related themes? 6. What has been your involvement in IABIN activities? What is your relationship to the IABIN focal point? (Note: any proposal submitted should have been sent ahead of time to the IABIN Focal Point in your country for their knowledge and some proof of this should be included in the proposal) 7. What are your provisions to ensure data quality? NEPA currently does not have a centralized database for protected areas, therefore the capacity needs to be built in this regard (which is the basis for this project). However, the agency has a SQL Database Officer who will be in charge of streamlining all existing databases, and who will be integral in the development of the national protected areas database. NEPA is an integral member of the Protected Areas Committee who meets on a regular basis to plan for the management of the nation s protected areas. NEPA is also leading the process for the preparation of the Protected Areas System Master Plan. NEPA was a stakeholder in the IABIN-I3N project and has participated in many IABIN training activities, including the most recent workshop on the introduction to the training of the PA Information System offered by the Brazilian Ministry of Environment. NEPA maintains a close relationship with the IABIN Focal point who has been integral in informing the Agency of IABIN activities and Calls. NEPA s Protected Areas Officers and IT SQL developers are all trained to the Tertiary level, therefore are all competent officers in collecting data. The quality check of the data will be done by the Managers of the Ecosystems and Protected Areas Branches of the Agency. Seeing that the data will be used in the legal development orders documents, it will undergo scrutiny by all stakeholders, including members of the Protected Areas Committee 2.4 Time frame/work plan Months Activity Engagement of SQL Database Developer 2. Initiation Workshop with Stakeholders to define Jamaica s PA database needs 3. Collating/Gathering data for Database development 4. Design and Setup of Database Server 5. Development of the PA Database (data digitizing) and linking with GIS 6. Training in the management of the PA database 7. Plan and host end of project workshop where Database will be launched to Stakeholders 8. Prepare and Submit quarterly technical and financial reports Development of a Protected Areas Database for Jamaica Page 4

6 2.5 Project budget Budget Line Item IABIN NEPA Totals 1. SQL Developer 7,000 7, Acquiring Database 2,000 4,000 6,000 Server 3. Initiation and Close-out Workshops 4. Training Facility & Materials 5. Operating Costs 6,000 6,000 Totals 10,000 10,400 20, Quantifiable Performance Indicators Months Activities Initiation Workshop 1 Meeting held and PA database needs quantified Gather and Collate data Design and Setup PA Server Digitize Protected Areas Geospatial information (shape files) Training of Officers in PA Management 50% of data gathered and collated by end of Month 2 1 Server up and functional by end of Month 2 30% Data digitized by end of Month 2 100% of data gathered and collated by end of Month 3 70% Data digitized by end of Month 3 100% Data digitized by end of Month 4 6 Officers trained by end of Month 5 Launch of Database PA Database launched by end of Month Impact and result indicators Objectives Impact indicators Result Indicators Digitize the Protected Areas data of 120 Protected Areas Train IT and Protected Areas personnel to update source data and to manage database Build and make available official correct data to assist in decision making for Biodiversity use and conservation. The PA Country database is updated and available to all stakeholders Improvement in PA data collection and management Decision making based on official and quality information increases. Data is available to the public through the IABIN portal, the PATN portal and the CHM in An up to date database, based on accurate and recent information Up to date and accurate data is fed into the Development Orders for all 14 parishes Development of a Protected Areas Database for Jamaica Page 5

7 Legal Status of the National Environment & Planning Agency (NEPA) Overview The National Environment and Planning Agency (NEPA) is an Executive Agency of the Government of Jamaica which was formed under the Executive Agencies Act on April 1, NEPA represents a merger between the Natural Resources Conservation Authority (NRCA), the Town Planning Department (TPD) and the Land Development and Utilization Commission (LDUC). The aim of the merger was to integrate environmental, planning and sustainable development policies and programmes and to improve customer service. Our Mission To promote sustainable development by ensuring protection of the environment and orderly development in Jamaica through highly motivated staff performing at the highest standard. Our Vision That Jamaica's natural resources are being used in a sustainable way and that there is broad understanding of environment, planning and development issues, with extensive participation amongst citizens and a high level of compliance to relevant legislation. Legislative Mandate NEPA operates under the following Acts: Policies The Natural Resources Conservation Authority Act; The Town and Country Planning Act; The Land Development and Utilization Act; The Beach Control Act; The Watershed Protection Act; and The Wildlife Protection Act The work of NEPA is guided by the following policies and plans: Jamaica National Environmental Action Plan (JaNEAP) National Physical Plan Policy for Jamaica's System of Protected Areas Biodiversity Strategy and Action Plan (Draft) Watershed Management Policy (Draft) Beach Policy for Jamaica (Draft) Environmental Management Systems Policy and Strategy (Draft) Executive Agencies Act accompanies this document as an attachment. Development of a Protected Areas Database for Jamaica Page 6

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