Environmental Coordinating Unit to be converted into a full-fledge government department

first_img Share 135 Views   no discussions Share Tweet Dr. Kenneth Darroux. (file photo)The Ministry of Environment, Fisheries and Natural Resources are discussing plans to soon transform the Environmental Coordinating Unit (E.C.U) into a full-fledge governmental department.Minister for Environment, Fisheries and Natural Resources, Honorable Dr. Kenneth Darroux said that this move is just one of many to address some of the environmental issues affecting the country.The issue of climate change, global warming, air and sea pollution are critical areas that environmentalists around the globe are now battling to control.Dr Darroux says under the GEF Programme in Dominica, the government is hoping that many of the issues can be dealt with speedily under a government department rather than a private entity.“One of the things we are hoping to do under this project, in addition to the new laws, is harmonizing and modernizing these laws is to have the Environmental Coordinating Unit (ECU) converted into a full-fledge government department with government enforcing the laws. Of course, with this we will need new personnel; we will need new training, so even then as the minister I’ve attended a number of international meetings to look at ways to receive scholarships for training for our people in terms of environmental engineers”. The government is hoping that under a government portfolio, the Ministry responsible for environment will be able to collate the existing laws governing the issue of environmental preservation and conservation.“At the ministerial level one of the things we have done at Part two of the GEF Project is that we are currently in the process of harmonizing and also modernizing our environmental legislation. What we have noticed is that legislation dealing with environmental issues, they are scattered throughout various numbers ofgovernments and departments including fisheries, health and forestry among others”. Dr Darroux said that the government has already identified persons who will be contracted to revise the existing laws; some of which are outdated and need to be removed or amended.“So what we have done in the first part of this project has been completed meaning that we’ve compiled all the environmental laws. Currently we found over 100 of them also dating back 100 years. We’ve hired a few environmental personnel to go through this legislation and make the adjustments where necessary, of course that would have to go through the legal affairs for vetting and also through parliament”. He believes that this move will also position Dominica to better maximize the many opportunities for developmental funding and training available by environment agencies in the region and the world.“The Environmental Coordinating Unit, which was established over a decade ago was set up to deal with Dominica’s obligations to international environmental protocol but over the years I think we can appreciate the importance that environment and climate change has taken in everything; in politics, finance etc. We in Dominica we have to position ourselves in order to take advantage of funding and other environmental programs that are available”.The Minister also underscored the work that the Ministry of Environment is doing as it relates to addressing the many issues affecting the environment. The ministry is planning a cleanup campaign to be carried out in rivers across the island. “We are doing a lot in the Ministry of Environment, a lot of what we do is just not being seen. One of the things that I’ve been challenged to do is to try to get the ministry involved in some more visible environmental projects, but as we know, everything costs money and I’ve already sat down with the permanent secretary and the Director of the E.C.U to see how we can seek funding to go on a nationwide cleanup campaign, for example, to clean up our rivers. In addition to the cleanliness of the rivers, one can appreciate it can also be used as a mitigation method to avoid disaster like what happened in Layou”.Dominica Vibes Newscenter_img Share Sharing is caring! LocalNews Environmental Coordinating Unit to be converted into a full-fledge government department by: – November 11, 2011last_img

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