Operator

The operator that is in charge of the implementation of the RESCCUE project in Fiji under the supervision of both SPC and the Fijian Government is: the Institute of Applied Sciences (University of the South Pacific) with Landcare Research, Wildlife Conservation Society, Conservation International, and Fiji Environment Law Association.

Contact: Isoa Korovulavula [email protected]

Pilot site

Ra and Kadavu Provinces

fiji

Activities

Particular attention will be paid to coherence and synergy with policies and actions from the different administrations and departments of the Fijian Government and local authorities in Ra and Kadavu Provinces. Close cooperation with other ICM-related projects operating in Fiji in general and Ra and Kadavu Provinces in particular is also expected from the operator.

RA Province

In the Ra Province, RESCCUE activities aim mostly at supporting the implementation of the newly developed provincial ICM plan.

Component 1: Integrated coastal management

1.1. ICM plan development

The development of Provincial ICM plans in Fiji falls under the national ICM framework, which relies on a participatory approach with a national ICM committee – a technical advisory committee to the National Environment Council – and provincial ICM committees where government functions in relevant line ministries (e.g. agriculture, health, fisheries and forests) are decentralized to the province. Based on a template for provincial-level ICM plans, provided by the national ICM committee, each province in Fiji will develop an ICM provincial plan relying on the provincial ICM committee.

Ra is the first province in Fiji that has produced a draft of an ICM provincial plan, alongside the establishment of the Ra Provincial ICM committee.

The RESCCUE project supports the completion and adoption of the existing draft ICM plan for the Ra Province, and its iterative refinement through adaptive management. This is done in accordance with national guidance and SPC guidelines on ICM plans.

1.2. Management activities

The RESCCUE ICM activities aim at supporting the implementation of the provincial ICM plan, by tackling the various issues identified as part of the participatory process, through innovative and concrete actions on the field. It is highlighted that such actions must be needs-driven and planned in a participatory way to secure buy-in of local communities and stakeholders. Besides, these activities must be designed in coherence with existing actions from various stakeholders on the field.

Resources to implement numerous tangible field activities within RESCCUE being limited to the available budget for the project and to potential additional co-funding from the Fijian government or other projects, cost-effectiveness and resource-efficiency are crucial parameters to identify, prioritize and design strategic actions to support the Ra ICM plan implementation in its various dimensions. In addition to their intrinsic interest, the operator will ensure that these actions are communicable and replicable to make its intervention sustainable. Uptake by governance structures – local administrations, as well as Fijian government – is therefore crucial. Many activities shall be designed to be used as tests (technical, organizational, social…), and particular attention will be paid to properly anticipate and plan for potential leverage effects.

  • Alternative waste management options
  • Community and private sector wastewater management
  • Freshwater fishing practices and community-based protected areas in rivers and streams
  • Riparian buffer restoration
  • Community-based MPAs and LMMAs and coastal fisheries enforcement
  • Mangroves rehabilitation and protection
  • Erosion-control
  • Farming practices and cattle ranching
  • Reforestation and sustainable agroforestry models
  • Other relevant activities identified in the ICM plan for the Ra Province

1.3. Climate change adaptation

As part and/or complement to the ICM plan and activities, and in coherence with the Republic of Fiji National Climate Change Policy, the operator will (i) synthetize existing knowledge about current and projected local climate change impacts; (ii) clarify and improve the contribution of identified ICM activities in the Ra Province to climate change adaptation; (iii) identify and implement, in collaboration with local authorities and actors, other activities contributing effectively to climate change adaptation.

In particular, the operator will seek effective collaboration with the SPC/GIZ CCCPIR and other climate change related projects in Fiji, and make proposals to implement joint activities.

1.4. Capacity building

In synergy with management activities, a capacity building plan is developed and implemented to support and sustain the project outcomes.

Specific emphasis is placed on the following activities:

  • Strengthen civil society in Ra Province (e.g. awareness raising/education, create opportunities for dialogue or engaging with local authorities etc., improve understanding and monitoring of Environmental Impact Assessments (EIA));
  • Strengthen provincial and national ICM committees (e.g. capacity building activities on project management, EIA monitoring and implementation, ICM planning, fund raising etc.);
  • Improve media/NGO awareness raising and “watchdog” capacity;
  • Build capacity of key stakeholders in Ra Province to better understand and implement the different legislation relevant to ICM (including EIA);
  • Support enforcement of national legislation in Ra Province by (i) mainstreaming the various ICM issues identified (e.g. legality of gravel extraction from rivers, burning, marine poaching, fishing and farming practices, application of land lease conditions around land leased for agricultural use etc.) in provincial governance structure and sectoral administration, and (ii) raising awareness and improving understanding of communities and administrations on substantial and procedural issues.

Component 2: Economic analysis

The operator identifies and carries out, in agreement with relevant stakeholders and decision-makers, economic analyses in support of components 1 and 3 in the Ra Province.

Component 3: Economic and financial mechanisms

The operator identifies economic and financial mechanisms that are appropriate to support ICM activities:

  • On a sustainable basis;
  • In addition to and in coherence with existing mechanisms (e.g. taxes, conservation agreements, trust fund…);
  • At the Ra Province (e.g. marine conservation agreements, agri environmental measures), or national scale (e.g. tourism tax, trust fund).

The feasibility study includes among others: funding needs; potential payers; technical, economic, financial, political feasibility; conditions of success. Specific attention is paid to the way these mechanisms integrate within existing financial transfers: subventions, taxes, grants, exemptions, etc., which will therefore be examined during the feasibility study.

In addition the operator realizes a thorough study on potentially existing harmful subsidies to the ecosystems and biodiversity in the Ra-Province (sources, volumes, objectives, and impacts), taking stock on methodologies developed by OECD and the European Union. The operator identifies such subsidies and suggests avenues to reduce or eliminate their impacts.

Based on the results from the feasibility study, the selected mechanism(s) will be implemented and its / their impacts monitored.

Kadavu Province

In the Kadavu Province, RESCCUE activities aim mostly at supporting the establishment and operations of the Provincial ICM Committee, and at contributing to the provincial ICM plan development. Activities under components 2 and 3 are subject to progress made on Component 1, unless some economic or financial mechanism is deemed necessary to set up at an early stage of the ICM process.

Component 1: Integrated coastal management

1.1. ICM plan development

Kadavu stakeholders have expressed their interest in developing their provincial ICM plan. The operator capitalizes on the Ra Province ICM plan development experience and use a similar approach in Kadavu in order to:

  • Support establishment and operation of an ICM committee for Kadavu Province;
  • Support development and adoption of an ICM plan for the Kadavu Province, in accordance with national guidance and SPC guidelines on ICM plans.

To this end, the operator in particular engages customary and non-customary resource owners, including the private sector, and supports the development of a joint ICM vision. The operator updates existing district-level natural resource management plans and identifies key ICM-related issues as well as the interventions needed to cope with such issues.

1.2. Management activities

Based on progress in the ICM plan development, and in coherence with past and current work and initiatives undertaken in Kadavu Province (e.g. IUCN Water and Nature Initiative, SPC coastal fisheries project) the operator will implement selected activities identified as relevant to the ICM plan development and/or early implementation. Such activities may include:

  • Support the establishment and maintenance of marine and terrestrial protected area(s);
  • Strengthen the management of existing community-based protected area(s);
  • Conservation, restoration and rehabilitation activities;
  • Waste and waste water management.

1.3. Adaptation to climate change

As part and/or complement to the ICM plan and activities, and in coherence with the Republic of Fiji National Climate Change Policy, the operator (i) synthetizes existing knowledge about current and projected local climate change impacts; (ii) clarifies and improves the contribution of identified ICM activities in Kadavu Province to climate change adaptation; (iii) identifies and implements, in collaboration with local authorities and actors, other activities contributing effectively to climate change adaptation.

In particular, the operator seeks effective collaboration with the SPC/GIZ CCCPIR and other climate change related projects in Fiji, and make proposals to implement joint activities.

1.4. Capacity building

In synergy with management activities, a capacity building plan is developed and implemented to support and sustain the project outcomes.

Specific emphasis will be placed on the following activities:

  • Strengthen civil society in Kadavu (e.g. awareness raising/education, create opportunities for dialogue or engaging with local authorities etc.);
  • Strengthen provincial and national ICM committee (e.g. capacity building activities on project management, ICM planning, computer skills, fund raising etc.)
  • Improve media/NGO awareness raising and “watchdog” capacity;
  • Build capacity of key stakeholders in Kadavu Province to better understand and implement the different legislations relevant to ICM;
  • Support enforcement of national legislation in Kadavu Province by (i) mainstreaming the various ICM issues identified (e.g. marine poaching, fishing practices) in provincial governance structure, and sectorial administration, and (ii) raising awareness  and improving understanding of communities and administrations.

Component 2: Economic analysis

The operator will identify and carry out, in agreement with relevant stakeholders and decision-makers, economic analyses in support of components 1 and 3 in Kadavu Province.

Component 3: Economic and financial mechanisms

The operator identifies economic and financial mechanisms that are appropriate to support ICM activities:

  • On a sustainable basis;
  • In addition to and in coherence with existing mechanisms (e.g. taxes, conservation agreements, trust fund…);
  • At the Kadavu Province (e.g. marine conservation agreements, agri environmental measures), or national scale (e.g. tourism tax, trust fund).

The feasibility study includes among others: funding needs; potential payers; technical, economic, financial, political feasibility; conditions of success. Specific attention is paid to the way these mechanisms integrate within existing financial transfers: subventions, taxes, grants, exemptions, etc., which will therefore be examined during the feasibility study.

In addition the operator realizes a thorough study on potentially existing harmful subsidies to the ecosystems and biodiversity in the Kadavu Province (sources, volumes, objectives, and impacts), taking stock on methodologies developed by OECD and the European Union. The operator identifies such subsidies and suggests avenues to reduce or eliminate their impacts.

Based on the results from the feasibility study, the selected mechanism(s) will be implemented and its / their impacts monitored.