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Island and Ocean Ecosystems
Environmental Monitoring and Governance

3 August 2023, Honiara, Solomon Islands – Following a workshop in March to collect and collate data for enhancing spatial analysis in the Solomon Islands under the Ensuring Resilient Ecosystems and Representative Protected Areas (EREPA) project, a successful second workshop to validate the data was held with Solomon Islands’ key national environment stakeholders on 3 August 2023. 

Held at the Iron Bottom Monarch Hotel in Honiara, the workshop was facilitated by the Secretariat of the Pacific Regional Environment Programme (SPREP) Environmental Monitoring and Governance (EMG) and Island and Ocean Ecosystems (IOE) Programmes and the Government of Solomon Islands Ministry of Environment, Climate Change, and Disaster Management & Meteorology (MECDM) Environment and Conservation Division (ECD). 

The EREPA project implemented by IUCN, the International Union for the Conservation of NatureIUCN , aims to establish a network of protected areas in Guadalcanal, Malaita, Renell-Bellona, and Temotu provinces. Through the SPREP executed component, a data gap analysis was conducted by SPREP to address the delineation of protected areas to achieve healthy, productive, and restored landscapes in the four provinces. The validation workshop focused on the presentation of the analysis results, to support and contribute to demarcating the proposed protected areas, based on the data shared by stakeholders in March. 

In his opening remarks, the MECDM Deputy Secretary Technical, Mr. Chanel Iroi said “the EREPA project will be contributing to addressing terrestrial biodiversity loss and ecosystem decline through the improved management of natural resources, the creation of protected and conserved areas within four Key Biodiversity Areas, and the strengthening of the policy framework for the creation, management, and maintenance of protected areas to support Solomon Islands in meeting its commitments under multilateral environment agreements”.

Mr Iroi acknowledged the stakeholders present and encouraged everyone to continue to collaborate and identify data custodians while establishing means of accessing and sharing data pertinent to this project. The collection of baseline data regarding natural resources and other factors will significantly enhance the informed and efficient decision-making process within the context of the Solomon Islands. 

In closing the workshop Mr. Jonathan Tafiariki, the Director of the National Disaster Management Office in the Solomon Islands, expressed his gratitude to all the stakeholders who joined forces to validate the data compiled during the data workshop. He said, “you are helping the country continue its future while still maintaining its ecosystem services”. Mr Tafiariki also thanked the key stakeholders for their continued support of the EREPA project.  

The EREPA Project is funded by the Global Environment Facility and executed by IUCN, is aimed at effective ecosystem management for healthy, complemented networks of protected, productive, and restored landscapes. IUCN plays a crucial role in protected areas by providing guidelines, standards and expertise for their establishments and management. It also helps countries collaborate with stakeholders and ensure sustainable management of these areas to safeguard biodiversity and ecosystems.

For more information on the EREPA Project, please contact Ms. Amanda Wheatley ([email protected][email protected])
For more information on the  BIOPAMA project, Ms. Kasaqa Tora: ([email protected]), and the ACP/MEA 3 project please contact Ms Vani Koroisamanunu  ([email protected])