The Green Fund Executing Unit is proud to support the efforts of the IAMovement ‘ME-WE-GREEN: An Education & Empowerment Programme for Climate Change Adaptation in Trinidad and Tobago’. The IAMovement through its ME-WE-GREEN: An Education & Empowerment Programme for Climate Change Adaptation initiative, intends to create greater and widespread awareness, education, empowerment, as well as to build resilience in communities regarding climate change impacts on soil, water and food. This initiative includes a special component targeting rural at-risk communities about the realities and possible adverse effects of climate change as well as to provide training and other educational tools to offer green and cost effective ways to combat the impacts of climate change.
In addition, this programme aims to develop and conduct a Vetiver Education & Empowerment Programme in eight communities across T&T over the two year programme period coupled with the establishment of vetiver nurseries in each geographic location; to serve communities. Vetiver produces a dynamic and strong root system which is highly drought-tolerant, wildfire resistant and is also very useful in dry land restoration to reduce soil erosion.
To achieve the objectives listed above, the IAMovement's initiative will include the following main areas of activity:
- Capturing of short videos and in-depth documentaries highlighting aspects and components of the ME-WE-GREEN Programme to be shared across the country at any time, on television, online, and at events. These videos may also be shared across the Caribbean to other islands facing similar climate adaptation needs which can follow T&T’s example. A longer feature documentary will also be produced over the course of the programme, to capture all its different components.
- Partnership with and led by UWI students under the guidance of key lecturers. These will result in a number of key and highly useful outputs, both with regards to quantification of total impact of the programme, as well as a series of reports with the ‘findings’ of the programme – which can lead to future decisions around the programme continuation locally, or adoption of policies with regards to general practices such as pertaining to erosion and sediment control measures, rehabilitation of denuded lands, and potential for vetiver in these areas.
It is expected that at the end of the Vetiver Education & Empowerment Programme, the participating communities will experience overall greater soil stability, reduced topsoil loss (and therefore topsoil and fertility regeneration, reduction in sediment and soil entering roadways and waterways, rivers and ocean. Slowdown in overall runoff can also reduce impacts of flooding downstream, though would need to be in a large enough scale to become measurable, and where this will be done through the academic components of the project in partnership with UWI and Servol. Longer term benefits will include the natural regeneration of forests comprising native trees.
This initiative aids in the achievement of Theme 5 of the Government’s National Development Strategy, Vision 2030, that is; ‘Placing the Environment at the Centre of Social and Economic Development. This project also contributes to the achievement of two key United Nations sustainable goals; Goal 13: Climate Action, which involves taking urgent action to combat climate change and its impacts through improves education, awareness-raising and human and institutional capacity on climate change mitigation, adaptation, impact reduction and early warning. Goal 15: Life on Land, which entails activities towards the protection, restoration and promotion of sustainable use of terrestrial ecosystems, sustainable management of forests, combat desertification, reverse land degradation and halt biodiversity loss
The Green Fund Executing Unit of the Ministry of Planning and Development, was established to provide financial assistance to eligible community groups and organizations for activities related to: reforestation, remediation, environmental education and public awareness of environmental issues and conservation of the environment. The Fund is capitalized by a Green Fund Levy of 0.3% on the gross sales or receipts of companies operating in Trinidad and Tobago. To date, the Green Fund Unit has contributed approximately $41 million to support environmental projects within Trinidad and Tobago. For further information on how you can access financial assistance for your next environmental project, contact the Green Fund Unit at (868) 225 – 3313.