JIS News

Story Highlights

  • The Ministry of Water, Land, Environment and Climate Change, has implemented its Watershed Area Management Mechanism (Watershed Model).
  • The Watershed Model is a community driven mechanism to allow for the sustainable use of the country’s watersheds.
  • State Minister in the Ministry, Hon. Ian Hayles, said the Government has exceeded its original target of implementing the model in five new units.

The Ministry of Water, Land, Environment and Climate Change, has implemented its Watershed Area Management Mechanism (Watershed Model), in 11 of the island’s 26 Watershed Management Units.

These include the Swift River, Oracabessa/Paggee, and White River/Rio Bueno in the North Eastern Region; Negril, Martha Brae, Great River and Lucea River in the Western Region; St. Elizabeth, Clarendon, and Gut Alligator Hole, Manchester in the Southern Region, as well as St. Catherine and St. Thomas in the South Eastern Region.

The Watershed Model is a community driven mechanism to allow for the sustainable use of the country’s watersheds.

In making his contribution to the 2014/15 Sectoral Debate in the House of Representatives on Tuesday, June 17, State Minister in the Ministry, Hon. Ian Hayles, said the Government has exceeded its original target of implementing the model in five new units.

In the meantime, Mr. Hayles noted that in order to revitalize the country’s watersheds, the Forestry Department has been working assiduously to ensure the preservation of Jamaica’s forests.

He informed that in the 2013/14 financial year, the Forestry Department distributed a total of 137,345 seedlings through three programmes.

Under the Private Forestry Programme, an additional 92,000 seedlings were distributed and during National Tree Planting Day celebrations last year, a total of 40,000 seedlings were disseminated.

Also important, Mr. Hayles said, is the department’s Adopt-a-Hillside Programme, which is geared towards engaging private sector, community-based, and non-government entities in reforestation efforts.

He noted that during the last financial year, the Jamaica Money Market Brokers (JMMB), LIME Foundation and RBC Jamaica, each planted one hectare or 1,875 seedlings in total.

“I would like to commend these companies and their staff for their efforts in this regard,” he said.

The State Minister said reforestation and tree-planting are activities that should be “a part of our everyday lives. Many of us love to pick and eat fruits, but have never planted a tree in our lives”.

He therefore, called on all Jamaicans to plant trees; further pointing out that he believes half a million seedlings can be planted this year.