Public Awareness and Education Materials

 “Increasing Economic Opportunities and Entrepreneurship for Rice & Other Agriculture”

 

Abstract Submission Form                                                       Call For Papers                                                                              Research Conference 



Technical research aimed at resolving some of the overall and critical questions underlying the environmental and socio-economic issues of mangrove loss and restoration is essential.

The Project partners with several national institutions including the University of Guyana and with international researchers to fill research gaps.

Key topics with regards to the ecology of Guyana's mangroves which require further research include:

  • Where and how does agricultural pollution affect the growth of trees and the wildlife populations it supports throughout the year?
  • What are the best practices for planting, the causes of sudden erosion, pest, and disease among others, have not been answered in the specific context of the Guyana coast.
  • In addition to the values placed on sea defense, how do mangroves contribute to the maintenance of coastal biodiversity?
  • Conducting baseline stock assessments to understand how much fisheries are supported by mangrove ecosystems.
  • In addition, understanding livelihoods, the social dynamics, and how communities use and value this precious resource – mangroves – are important baseline information needed for its protection.

Addressing these and other questions will require the combined efforts of many agencies. Input from and collaboration with, at least, the Guyana Forestry Commission, Sea and River Defence Division, the Environmental Protection Agency, and all relevant departments within the University will be considered.

 

Call for Proposals 2015-2016

Download (PDF): Call for Proposals

 

Priority areas of research for the 2015-2016 Research Proposals:

Value of mangroves for fisheries

Due to their complex physical structure and relatively high productivity, mangroves support a wide range of food chains including marine, estuarine, freshwater, and terrestrial which can be further subdivided by the source food, e.g., grazing food chains originating in leaves, seedlings, wood, fruits, etc., and detrital food chains (Lugo, 1980). The detrital food chains can be extremely complex as they originate from many kinds of litter, particulate detritus, dissolved organic materials, etc.

 Aside from their role as a food source, mangrove forests play an important role in maintaining commercial fisheries by providing nursery habitat, refuge from predators, for important species of fish and shrimp.

There is no research in Guyana that compares the export of detrital from mangrove areas and the amount of coastal fish production. It is not known for example how many fish species use mangroves as reproductive, nursery, or habitat areas at some point in their life cycle although recent surveys conducted in Golden Grove-Belfield mangrove reserve reported 16 species including commercially important species (Kalamadeen 2013). These uses can be documented through autecological research on commercially important species. Of importance to the Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries Department is the determination the degree of dependence of commercial fisheries on mangrove detritus.   (Source: Review of Mangrove Research in Guyana (2013))

 

Economic Valuation of Ecological Services Provided by Mangroves

Mangroves are considered to be among the most productive ecosystems on earth, yet their economic, social and cultural values are often neglected in decision making and conflicts exist as to how best to use the land and forest resources. A major problem of mangrove resource management is how to assign value to products and services provided by these ecosystems as well as their perceived value. 

In Guyana a recent study by Ilieva (2013) estimated the total economic value of mangroves at USD1209 per hectare incorporating direct use values (fishing, ecotourism and apiculture indirect use values (carbon sequestration, biodiversity). This study did not evaluate the benefits in terms of coastal protection and non-use values of mangroves. In a recent study of the economic value of some mangrove services, Barbier et al. (2008) estimated the value of coastal protection from storms to be about USD 1.6 million per km2 of mangroves over a 20-year period. 

In Guyana there is a definite need for more research in this area – valuing Guyana’s mangroves as very little work has been done in this area. There is also the issue of the cost effectiveness of the GMRP planting programme where mangrove planting is done to complement hard sea defence structures. To this end there is need to determine the ecological as well as the monetary value of planted mangroves. This should be given high priority given the fact that it will give credibility to the GMRP and enable contributions from the GMRP to be balanced by decision makers against other alternative sea defences options in Guyana.Source: Review of Mangrove Research in Guyana (2013))

For Prospective Researchers and Institutions

Based on the Project's needs, NAREI welcomes interested academic institutions and researchers to partner with us. NARI will provide the following:

  • Access to transportation among pilot sites, when possible.
  • Access to office space, wireless internet, phone, printing and fax.
  • Access to available documents and resources on mangroves.
  • Facilitate clearing of administrative bottlenecks for meetings with key national stakeholders and institutions.

NB: Researchers and Academic Institutions are responsible for securing all relevant documentation and permission to conduct research within Guyana from the relevant Government Agencies. Research Proposals must to be submitted to NAREI at the same time when research application is submitted to the EPA etc.

The communities that are closest to the pilot sites are active participants in the replanting process and site development, and monitoring of the pilot sites.

The Pilot Sites currently considered within the plan include Mon Repos, Hope Beach, and Ruimzeight in Region Three, where one of the most significant examples of natural regeneration can be found.

COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT AND PUBLIC AWARENESS

Students on the way to Conservation Camp

The success of the project will be determined by the level of involvement, support for and ownership of the process by local communities. Much of this is dependent on a strategic and sustained approach to community development and public awareness.

Much therefore depends on the success of public awareness and education campaigns. The recognition of the vital roles that mangroves play; the extraordinary environment to which they have adapted and their vulnerability to external pressures, should become part of the Nation's consciousness. As this understanding grows, and a sense of shared national responsibility fostered, the work of restoration and protection will be made easy.

The Project works along with various community groups and facilitates community discussions, youth group sessions and community events.

 

 

WHAT COMMUNITIES SAY MATTER?

 

The project values community input and in 2010, during the initial stages of project implementation, several consultations were held with coastal communities from Region One to Region Six.

Several major issues were identified by communities and these ranged from the general lack of awareness of the laws that relates to mangrove and seashore areas, citizens' responsibilities and alternatives to activities that affect mangroves.

Several recommendations were made to deal with mangrove cutting, livestock grazing and hauling of boats in mangrove areas.

As a result of the region-wide community consultations, the Project conducts targeted discussion sessions with various community groups (fishermen, livestock owners, Beekeepers among others) to provide clarifications and to find potential solutions when they are directly affected by the project.

 

 

 

WORKING WITH BEES!

 

As part of its sustainable livelihoods interventions, the project has engaged coastal Beekeepers, especially those with hives near mangroves, as stakeholders who will help to managed and monitor mangrove sites.

The Project will assist few small-scale Beekeepers with marketing of their honey from areas which are to be identified from along the coast. Along with the Beekeeper Association, the Project will also assist with labels and bottling of the final product.

 

 

 

 

 

 

YOUTH ARE TOMORROW'S MANGROVE SAVIOURS!

Proper Garbage Disposal habits must start at an early age

MAC staff with youths from Hope Beach in cleanup exercise(August 2010).

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Engaging children and youth is necessary because behavioural change takes several years. Similar to working with the adult community members, children and youth will come to recognise the value of mangroves, not only for sea defense, but also of their immense environmental importance, and for the need to manage coastal zone resources like mangroves.

Mangrove Conservation Class at Hope Beach

The Project uses a number of interactive activities which involves youth camps and seminars, poster competitions, community service projects which includes clean-ups and beautification activities.

Working with the community to raise awareness

Effects of Coastal Zone Erosion

 

Educating the youth of communities

At the national level monitoring protocols for the mangrove project are being developed  by coastal zone specialist Mr Phillip Da Silva who is a senior lecturer at the University of Guyana and has decades of experience in coastal zone management. The Mangrove Action Committee has signed an MOU with both the Guyana Forestry Commission (GFC) and is collaborating closely with  the Work Services Group (WSG) which have responsibility for sea defences. There are mangrove rangers who have received formal training by the Mangrove Project Office (MPO) and practical training through   attachments to both the GFC and WSG rangers. They are stationed in communities that have been replanted and  communicate  daily with the MPO as well as provide monthly reports.

 At the regional level there will be  regional mangrove officers who will oversee the activities of the mangrove project in each region. At the community level there have been numerous community consultations from which  community based mangrove committees have been set up. The mangrove seedling providers are an integral part of the community mangrove committees as well as students from the Guyana School of Agriculture who are from the various communities and who have identified an interest in the monitoring, data collection, awareness and nursery components of the project. The community committees are supported in the enforcement activities by the  community policing groups . All of these stakeholders have  been trained by the MPO and WSG . The use of National Drainage and Irrigation Community Officers  in the planting exercise from the inception of the project has also consolidated involvement and support at the community level and developed a sense of local ownership.

LEGISLATION
An initial review of legislation had revealed that in order for the protection of mangroves in Guyana to be effective, loopholes in the current legislation need to be closed, so that that all mangroves are given uniform and assured priority for protection. Fortunately the legislative framework for immediate protection already existed and as it was within the power of the Minister of Agriculture to declare any tree a protected species this was done.
On the 29 January 2010, in exercise of the powers conferred upon him by section 42 of the Forest Act, and after consultation with the Guyana Forestry Commission, the Minister of Agriculture made an amendment to Regulation 17 of the Principal Regulations by the substitution of the following:
"Protected Trees" 17. (1) "No bullet-wood tree or red, black or white mangrove trees shall be felled without first obtaining the permission in writing of an authorized forest officer not below the rank of an Assistant Commissioner of Forests"

Our Vision

To augment Guyana's sea defence by protecting, restoring and managing the natural coastline barrier provided by our mangrove forests.

Contact Information

Guyana Mangrove Restoration Project
National Agricultural Research Institute
Agriculture Road, Mon Repos East Coast Demerara
Phone (592) 220-2843
Fax (592) 220-4481/220-2843
Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

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