The Caribbean Regional Environmental Program (CREP) was designed to demonstrate a model for sustainable use of natural resources. This multifaceted program has been funded by the European Union and its purpose is to strengthen regional cooperation and capacity in conservation management and sustainable development in order to assure greater attention to environmental issues in the CARIFORUM Region. CREP is being implemented by the Caribbean Conservation Association (CCA) through a Programme Management Unit (PMU) based at the CCS Secretariat in Barbados.
CREP’s components include: 1) development and strengthening of an effective Regional Environmental Information Network (REIN); 2) promotion of education and awareness on environmental issues throughout CARIFORUM Member States; 3) improvement of the skills and capacity of the Regional Institutions to enable them to act effectively in the delivery of a regional environmental mandate (capacity building); and 4) development and enhanced management of Amenity Areas in each of the CARIFORUM Member States (natural areas having significant ecological and economic value, requiring special management interventions to ensure their integrity).
At a consultation with relevant NGOs and governmental representatives from each country in April 2002, Trinidad and Tobago’s representatives put forth the idea of a joint Amenity Area project that would link NE Trinidad, from Matura to Matelot with SW Tobago from Bon Accord to Plymouth. The unifying thread running through these two very different areas is a common interest in developing a truly sustainable and conservation driven eco-tourism product. The three main components are the Matura National Park, the Buccoo Reef Marine Park and the turtle nesting beaches on both islands.
Named after the historical title for the body of water between the two islands, the three year Galleons Passage Project is being jointly coordinated by the Division of Agriculture, Marine Affairs and the Environment; Marine Affairs and Fisheries Department and Environment TOBAGO in Tobago and by the Ministry of Public Works and the Environment, Forestry Division and Stakeholders Against Destruction (SAD) For Toco in Trinidad. These Focal Point Organizations are also working closely with many other groups in the Amenity Area, such as SOS Tobago and the Buccoo Reef Trust in Tobago. Look out for the official project launch in December 2003! For further information call Tanya Clovis Environment TOBAGO at 660-7462.