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Hosted by the Caribbean Biodiversity Fund’s Acting CEO, Karen McDonald Gayle, the Caribbean 30×30 livestream on Wednesday 9th, 2022 featured Caribbean Climate-Smart Accelerator CEO Racquel Moses, and the Organisation of Eastern Caribbean States’ Director General Dr Didacus Jules. The online broadcast saw them discuss the importance and opportunities of the 30×30 goal in the Caribbean, and what needs to be done to ensure that the region achieves the target and reaps the many benefits.

“We need more of the countries and territories to come on board now and we need them to be more deliberate and decisive about taking action. We need more action,” explained Ms Moses. The 30×30 target is a worldwide initiative for governments to designate 30% of Earth’s land and ocean area as protected areas by 2030. There are currently 2 major political initiatives working jointly to promote 30×30 globally:

  • The Costa Rica and France led High Ambition Coalition (HAC) for Nature & People seeks to protect at least 30% of the world’s lands and oceans by 2030; and
  • The United Kingdom-led Global Ocean Alliance (GOA) focuses specifically on the conservation of marine biodiversity and resources.

So far, a dozen Caribbean nations have signed up to either the HAC or GOA. Currently, the 30×30 campaign aims to fold GOA members into the HAC in order to maximise the effectiveness of land and ocean conservation efforts. This is a point both Dr Jules and Ms Moses emphasized during the livestream.

“The key to us reaching this 30×30 goal is not to just focus on land, but also our sea-space. In the OECS our sea-space is roughly 83 times our land space,” said Dr Jules, “There is an interconnection between what happens on land, and what happens in the sea – they cannot be separated. We need to take a holistic and integrated approach to this.”

As part of the global push by the HAC to reach the 30×30 target, it has called for $60 billion in funding to be unlocked for participating nations from both private and public institutions. This financing would help provide innovative opportunities for the region to protect its biodiversity, something Mrs Gayle said would contribute to protecting the Caribbean’s unique natural areas.

You can watch the full livestream below, and join us for the second of the series next Tuesday, which will feature Grenada’s Minister for Climate Resilience, Simon Stiell, and Minister without Portfolio within Jamaica’s Ministry of Economic Growth, Matthew Samuda.

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