Integrating biodiversity safeguards and conservation into development

Palau's GEF6 National Project, 2018-2024
Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries, and Environment (MAFE)
(formerly Ministry of Natural Resources, Environment & Tourism, MNRET)
Republic of Palau

Mainstreaming biodiversity conservation into land and seascape governance, planning, and management

Palau's Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries, and Environment (MAFE; formerly the Ministry of Natural Resources, Environment & Tourism, MNRET) launched the National GEF6 Project in 2018. Through the GEF6 Project, the Ministry will support States and partners to protect biodiversity and sustainably develop key sectors through:

  • Establish an Environmental Planning Unit (EPU) within MNRET to support and facilitate national and state Land Use Planning.
  • MNRET establishes and serve as the Secretariat for a Joint Coordination Body (JCB). The JCB will be a Planning Body composed of State Representatives and supported by a Technical Group. During this project, the JCB will develop a Babeldaob-wide and Southern Lagoon-wide vision and spatial map with land use designations. After this GEF6 Project, the EPU and JCB will expand nationwide. 
  • Using the outcomes and capacity built during National planning, the GEF6 Project will work individually with States to incorporate the island-wide designations into State Master Plans, Land Use Plans, or Action Plans.
  • Mainstream National Laws, National Environmental Policies (like NBSAP, Climate Change Policy), Best Practices, and Social Equity into development plans and processes (e.g. Master Plans, permit applications, loan requirements, etc.).

2. Reduction of threats to biodiversity

  • Drastic improvement and expansion of Biosecurity and management of Invasive Alien Species.
  • Alignment of National and State enforcement agencies (EQPB, Division of Fish and Wildlife, Biosecurity Office) to improve surveillance and enforcement of environmental laws
  • Review, filling of gaps, and alignment of laws and regulations to ensure the National Policies are mainstreamed throughout.

3. Implementation of State Plans in an equitable and socially inclusive way

  • Support for States to implement Best Practices in agriculture, aquaculture, biosecurity/IAS, fisheries, forestry, housing, and sustainable tourism (per their Master Plans).
  • Careful assessment of gender and social impacts of all project outcomes, with continual micro-corrections to maintain inclusivity and equity.

4. Partnerships and Communication, with learning and knowledge capture

  • Strengthening partnerships for sustainable development across the National, State, Nonprofit, and Business sectors.
  • Building on and expanding on existing partnerships and planning activities (KBUDSAP, GEF5)
  • Capture and sharing of knowledge generated by and about the Project.