The Organization of American States, OAS and the Department of Marine resources have teamed together in developing a co-management model for the Narrows area and also the New Castle Bay.
A workshop for stakeholders was held Thursday and Friday at the St. Paul’s Anglican Church Hall.
The Narrows is the name of the strait that separates Saint Kitts and Nevis . At its narrowest, it is 3.5 kilometers wide. The area has been re-zoned and increased in size and will soon be designated the first Marine Managed Area (MMA) in St. Kitts and Nevis, titled ‘The Narrows Marine Managed Area’ (NMMA).
The workshop had a number of stakeholders from Fishers, Tourism, Water taxi Operators , Department of Marine Resources , Department of Fisheries, Nevis Air and Seaport Authority NASPA , Nevis Historical and Conservation Society NHCS, Environmental Health , Solid Waste, Nevis Turtle Group, St Kitts Turtle Monitoring Network all in attendance.
The Observer spoke with consultant for the workshop Janice Hodge who outlined the importance of developing a co-management model for the Narrows area and the New Castle Bay and pointed out that this comes after the declaration of the St Kitts and Nevis Marine Managed area with the Narrows having a conservation zone, a fisheries zone, and recreational zone among other things.
“It is important that we have all the stakeholders present, because often times when you develop a management plan compromises have to be made and if all the stakeholders are not present then they would not understand why decisions were taken as to the way the area would be managed “she said.
Hodge added that workshop will allow for persons to say what they want and do not want for the area.
“What we trying to do with this workshop is to get all the stakeholders to present their wants, their needs, their wish list and once we have everything on the board we will see where we have similar needs, similar management needs and then we see how best we can mange,” she said.
Day one of the workshop dealt with sharing the information while day two will address the stakeholder perceptions regarding co- managing of the Narrows/ New Castle Bay.