Haiti – Environment : Deforestation rate on the rise in the country…
As part of World Environment Day, the United Nations will officially launch the Decade for Ecosystem Restoration (2021-2030) on Friday 5 June 2021. Selected among the top priorities for humanity during consultations, this global challenge aims to revitalize ecosystems on every continent and in every ocean, in order to help eradicate poverty, fight climate change and prevent massive extinctions.
Haiti has already lost all of its primary forests, and the remaining forests continue to reduces. According to the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) Global Forest Resources Assessment (FRA), the forest area in Haiti has fallen to 12.6% of the national territory, and the forest cover in overall is estimated at 36.3%. The annual rate of deforestation which was relatively contained and stable between 2000-2010 (0.19%), increased markedly between 2011-2015 (0.34%) and accelerated further between 2017 and 2019 (0.49%) after a year of record degradation in 2016 linked to the impacts of Hurricane Matthew (1.7%).
The loss of biodiversity reinforces vulnerabilities, compromises the development of the country and affects all layers of Haitian society, especially women and the younger generations. Beyond the concrete commitments implemented on the ground by the United Nations Development Program (UNDP), FAO, the International Labor Organization, UNESCO or the United Nations Environment Program (UNEP), the United Nations supports the policies of the Haitian Government in environmental matters, in particular the National Strategy for Biodiversity called “Haiti Biodiversity 2030”.
In an already complex political, security and health context in Haiti, the United Nations reiterates the urgency of the environmental crisis and the need to protect biodiversity. It is important that public institutions, civil society, the private sector and technical and financial partners integrate considerations of good environmental practice, both in their long-term strategies and in their short-term operations.
The UN in Haiti is advocating for the establishment of an observatory for green reconstruction, with the technical capacities and institutional anchoring capable of effectively informing the accounting, budgetary and financial processes as well as public and socio-economic policies in the country.
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