CLOSING OF THE NATIONAL ENVIRONMENT WEEK 2017

The National Environment Week 2017, launched on Monday 30 October 2017 will come to an end today, with an official closing ceremony and tree planting activity at the Malololelei Reserve. The tree planting event is held at one of the most critical areas of upland forests which the Ministry is trying to preserve. The area was formerly part of the Catholic Church lands taken by Government for public benefit, in efforts to preserve steep slopes, critical habitats, and water sources from development. The area forms part of a wider reserve network acting as a biodiversity hotspot and corridor at Malololelei. It also includes the privately owned bio-reserve, of the Faamausili Andrew Ah-Liki family.

The Environment Sector throughout the week has been engaging with its partners and stakeholders in efforts to discuss and share lessons learnt on creating ecological and practical solutions, to enhance environmental management efforts in our country. The theme for this year’s National Environment Week: “Healthy Environment, Healthy People”, echoed throughout the proceedings which involved not only the Government Ministries, agencies, private sector, schools and NGOs, but most importantly the selected communities in Upolu and Savaii.

The theme according to the Minister of Environment, Le Afioga ia Fiame Naomi Mata’afa in her official statement for week, is a reminder to all of Samoa, to think twice with our developments so that what we are doing today, do not have negative environmental implications for the long run.

Major issues discussed this week have been the importance of maintaining good upland and river side forest cover; disaster preparedness for the private sector; renewable energy alternatives; ridge to reef for watershed and coastal waters management; community biodiversity reserves for wildlife; and sustainable land management practices and projects.

Furthermore, discussions during the week have been documented, and will be reflected within the National Environment Sector Plan, which sets the priorities towards developing effective policies and strategies, towards a green and healthy Samoa.

The CEO of the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment, Le Tofa ia Ulu Bismarck Crawley and the Environment Sector, expresses appreciation to all its development partners, regional organizations, Ministries and agencies, the private sector, NGOs and Civil Societies, and most importantly the community, who have extended support to all the environment conservation campaigns, as well as the National Environment Week 2017.

For more information on the week that was the National Environment Week 2017, please contact the Ministry on telephone 67200.  For a detailed information, please email Jackie Nuuvali at jackie.nuuvali@mnre.gov.ws.

God Bless, Soifua.

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