In October 2009, USAID approved a three-year work plan for the USAID Sustainable Forests and Coasts project, which contained a detailed description of the activities and key actions planned for Fiscal Year 2010 (FY10) and a general overview of the activities for FY11 and FY12. The present detailed work plan for FY11 presents specific strategies, activities and key actions for implementation from October 2010 to September 2011.
In FY11, the Project will continue to consolidate its FY10 initiatives in the same geographic areas the Project prioritized in FY10 together with the Ministry of the Environment (MAE) and the USAID Environmental Team, as follows:
- Gran Reserva Chachi and its buffer zone
- Reserva Marina (RM) Galera San Francisco and related watersheds
- Machalilla National Park (PNM for its Spanish Acronym) and the Ayampe River watershed
- Reserva de Producción Faunística (RPF) Manglares el Salado
- Reserva Ecológica (RE) Manglares Churute, its buffer zone and mangrove concessions
The Project´s implementation strategy remains focused on providing the technical assistance needed to reduce threats to biodiversity conservation in these priority areas, and particularly in protected areas. In the FY11 work plan these threats, and the strategies and activities designed to minimize them, are tailored o the project´s results framework and presented in alignment with the Project´s Intermediate Results (PIRs).
The project developed the FY11 Work Plan using a participatory approach, gathering input on needs and prioritizes thru strategic consultations with a wide range of stakeholders in each geographic area. The strategy building sessions focused on how to best promote conservation of areas critical to biodiversity conservation and reduce the major threats in each area. Stakeholders consulted included local government authorities, protected area managers, community members, NGOs and MAE authorities, among others. Key to developing the work plan was the close partnership the Project had developed with the MAE in FY10. This close working relationship is in part a result of the project´s support for activities related to the National System of Protected Areas (SNAP for its Spanish acronym) and technical assistance for the government´s programs and policies for biodiversity management. In addition, the Project´s close working relationships with parochial, municipal and provincial governments in each of the target areas facilitated work plan development and will continue to facilitate Project implementation. The Project expects to continue maintaining continuity in its partnership with the MAE and local governments, even during changes in leadership; however, this is always a critical factor in implementation.
The long-term sustainability of these efforts is being ensured by leveraging funds and creating partnerships with local, regional and international organizations and leveraging funds from public/private sources.
In response to PIR 1, In FY11, the Project will focus on implementing activities to achieve the result “Improve biodiversity conservation in critical habitats.” Strategies include minimizing the loss and/or alteration of those habitats (through improved management and rehabilitation of terrestrial and coastal marine habitats and public policy advocacy). A second strategy is to develop climate change adaptation measures, including activities to reduce risk factors (through establishing and implementing response and adaptation measures, reducing greenhouse gases and conserving carbon sink).
In response to PIR 2, the Project will improve local livelihoods and create economic alternatives by developing and promoting market based economic alternatives and economic incentives for conserving critical habitats.
Lastly, in response to PIR 3, the Project will continue to support partnerships for biodiversity conservation by promoting platforms to coordinate and lead conservation initiatives. This will ensure the continuity of biodiversity conservation in the medium and long term. The strategy consists of providing technical support to build local capacity in key stakeholders (particularly the MAE and local governments) by strengthening management of protected areas and improving inter-institutional communication and coordination. This will be accomplished by working through existing coalitions and partnerships and/or creating new ones while leveraging financial resources.
In FY11 the Project will continue complying with USAID environmental regulations through following procedures established in the Fichas de Revisión Ambiental.