19th PIRT annual meeting brings 'mana' to the table

Wielding the power of 'Mana' for effective biodiversity management in the Pacific islands was encouraged at the 19th Pacific Islands Roundtable for Nature Conservation Annual Meeting.

'Mana', a term commonly used in the Pacific islands is best described as quality or a characteristic that entails wisdom, integrity and commands respect.

The two day annual meeting of PIRT brought together over 50 delegates from across the Pacific region to discuss around the theme "Mainstreaming biodiversity: Sustaining Pacific people and their livelihoods.'

"There are substantial challenges in the Pacific region when it comes to nature conservation, through mainstreaming biodiversity, this tool can address issues such as climate change," said Mr Taholo Kami, the PIRT Chair and Director of International Union for Oceania Region (IUCN ORO)

PIRT  copyParticipants of the 19th Pacific Islands Roundtable for Nature Conservation Annual Meeting at the Convention Centre of Tanoa International Hotel, Nadi, Fiji, 14-15 July. Photo: SPREP

The Roundtable is the key coordination mechanism for the implementation of the new Framework for Nature Conservation and Protected Areas in the Pacific Islands region 2014-2020.

It is a coalition of nature conservation and development organisations, governments, inter-governmental organisations, donor agencies and community groups created to increase effective conservation in the Pacific Islands region.

"PIRT plays a crucial role in bringing together governments, communities, regional partners, conservation organisations and donors to foster partnerships," said Mr. Kosi Latu, the Director General of the Secretariat of the Pacific Regional Environment Programme (SPREP).

Further adding that, "This will be critical in helping to mainstream biodiversity and engaging different sectors."
The 19th Annual Meeting of the Pacific Islands Roundtable for Nature Conservation was opened on 15 July by Fiji's Permanent Secretary of Environment, Mr. Joshua Wycliffe. He congratulated PIRT for focusing on mainstreaming biodiversity, adding further that "This issue is close to our hearts, it impacts on the livelihoods of the Pacific people. It is only through strategic approaches and pragmatic actions that we can ensure the multi-level mainstreaming of biodiversity continues."

Mr. Wycliffe, underlined that Fiji's commitment on mainstreaming biodiversity as one of the first countries in the region, has put in place a Green Growth Framework which is articulated in the National Green Growth Framework (NGGF) for Fiji. He pointed out that the Framework aims at ensuring industries and businesses develop their sectors with strong environment considerations.

The discussions at the 19th PIRT Annual Meeting focused on effective approaches and practical solutions for mainstreaming biodiversity at national, sectoral, and local community levels taking into account national priorities that support sustainable development aspirations of countries in the region. The meeting reaffirmed the role of the Roundtable as a mechanism for partners to deliver targeted support and leverage funding support through projects to assist countries implement NBSAP priorities that would contribute towards the achievement of the SDGs, the Aichi Targets and the Framework for Nature Conservation and Protected Areas 2014-2020.

PIRT 2L-R: Dr. Sarat Babu Gidda, CBD, Mr. Kosi Latu, SPREP Director General, Hon. Joshua Wycliffe, Permanent Secretary of Environment for the Government of Fiji and Mr. Taholo Kami, PIRT Chair/Director of IUCN ORO, at the 19th PIRT Annual Meeting, Nadi, Fiji. 

Country representatives from Fiji, Federated States of Micronesia, Marshall Islands, Papua New Guinea, Samoa, Solomon Islands, Tonga, and Tuvalu, local community leaders, academics and conservationists from around the region deliberated on the year ahead, specifying practical actions for ensuring the sustainable and equitable management of natural resources in the Pacific island region.

The 19th PIRT Annual Meeting was held from 14-15 July, 2016 in Nadi, Fiji.

For further information please contact pirtsecretariat@sprep.org
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