Stringent measures in place to prevent land degradation in Guyana

DPI, Guyana, Monday, January 28, 2019

Guyana has employed stringent measures to prevent land degradation with the implementation of the Sustainable Land Management Project.

Birthed from the recent Partnership Initiative for Sustainable Land Management (PISLM) Regional Conference hosted by Guyana, Minister of State Joseph Harmon said the project will allocate lands for specific use and reclaiming degraded lands.

Minister of State Joseph Harmon addressing the CRIC 17 delegates; to his left is Executive Secretary of the UNCCD Monique Barbut and to his right Deputy Executive Secretary, UNCCD, Pradeep Monga.

Speaking to members of the media today on the sidelines of the seventeenth session of the Committee for the Review of the Implementation of the Convention (CRIC 17), Minister Harmon said Guyana is in the process of implementing the project which is partly funded by the United Nation (UN), Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) and the Government of Guyana.

He said the government continues to address issues in mining communities regarding lands that are being “mined out” and are not revegetated.

“Those issues are now on the table. For permissions to be granted for large scale mining, there must be a plan on how you will reforest and deal with degradation that takes place as a result of mining,” the State Minister told the media.

Addressing the issue of drought, Minister Harmon said that even with Guyana’s tropical rainforest, drought is still possible. The South Rupununi, Region Nine (Upper Takatu-Upper Essequibo) has been feeling the brunt of dry weather conditions.

He said while the Ministry of Agriculture has addressed the flooding situation in the region, the government is seeking to use wells to counter the consequences of drought in that region. He reminded of the agreement between Guyana and neighbouring Brazil, with support from the Guyana Water Incorporated, the Civil Defense Commission and Guyana Defence Force who assisted in the drilling of wells in at least eight major Indigenous communities in the South Rupununi. This will allow them to have potable water during the drought season.

Minister Harmon reiterated that such developments are a representation of the “good life” the administration has promised for all Guyanese.

“This is what we want to replicate in every part of this country, where people can be assured that drought will never be a factor which they have to consider, in planning their lives and planting their crops,” he said.

Alexis Rodney.

Images: Department of Public Information.