ONE MILLION TREES FOR MACAYA NATIONAL PARK

Macaya National Park. Photo Credit: Alan Cressler

One of Haiti’s last national parks will receive a $ 9 million grant to ensure its preservation and 1 million trees will be planted this week (March 2018).

In a press conference held Tuesday, March 21st, Astrel Joseph, Director of Water Resources within the Ministry of the Environment announced the launch of the planting of 1 million trees in the Macaya National Park.

In the framework of “World Days of Forests and Water” adopted by the United Nations in 1992, which requires that each country emphasize the importance and management of these natural resources, a day of symbolic planting of trees in the Macaya Natural Park will take place on March 22nd. The theme chosen is “Macaya, World Forest Heritage: Let’s commit to it! ‘’ Other themes such as conservation, development of forests and hydraulic potential will also be observed.

This symbolic day will be held simultaneously on three sections of the Massif de la Hotte where the Macaya National Natural Park (PNN-Macaya) is located:

1) Rendel-Grande Plaine (Southwestern slope),

2) Chantal-Formand-Cavalier (Southern slope),

3) Duchity -Beaumont-Roseaux – Jeremie (Northern slope).

This initiative aims to make the population aware of the strategic interest of the PNN-Macaya as a forest heritage and biosphere reserve of global importance.

This reforestation project of the Ministry of the Environment, which is in the final phase, is carried out with the support of the Inter-American Development Bank, the Global Environment Facility and Norwegian Cooperation. The project will extend over the duration of the 2018 reforestation campaign.

Macaya National Park, home to one of the country’s largest remaining forests, benefited in 2013 with a $ 9 million grant from the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) in order to ensure its preservation.

Haiti has lost almost all of its forest coverage due to pressure from population growth, harmful farming practices and the cutting of forests for charcoal, the principal source of energy. Deforestation hastens soil erosion, which is worsened by the country’s exposure to hurricanes and tropical storms. It also exacerbates the flooding and landslides that occur every rainy season.

Less than 2% of Haiti’s territory is covered with original forests. The country has several national parks in addition to dozens of legally declared protected areas. This deforestation is explained by the fact that wood has long been the main source of energy for Haitians combined with expansion of agricultural activities throughout the country.

Nancy Roc

 

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