Haiti has launched a US$300 million initiative to combat climate change and mitigate deforestation throughout the island nation as part of a joint effort by the government, international organizations and social groups.
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The climate change strategy is set to transpire over the next 10 years to protect the country’s diverse fauna and flora, shield its communities and prepare society for changes to the weather, the Ministry of Environment and Agriculture and the Haitian Relief Organization stated.
The plan enlisted the help of international environmental and social groups such as the Parker Foundation, the World Bank, and the French Development Agency.
Environment Minister Pierre Simon Georges explained the project, titled “Haiti Prend Racine,” or "Haiti takes root," is vital to establishing an adaptable environment that will aid in the fight against climate change.
"We are grateful for the support of organizations and other governments to help us launch this grandiose project. We will work to improve the situation of the country to face the effects of climate change,” the minister said.
According to Jphro director Margarett Lubin, Haiti is one of the top three countries that has been most affected by climate change.
"We have to fight against deforestation and avoid further erosion at the national level. We have a movement called Haiti Prend Racine that aims to support technically and economically to improve the situation," she stressed. Lubin acknowledged that the Caribbean nation has obstacles to face, "but we will continue and do our best to start seeing results soon."
Haiti has been swept with one natural disaster after another, from the devastating earthquake in 2010 to mudslides and disease outbreaks and most recently, Hurricane Matthew which left 573 dead and thousands more displaced as the destructive rains laid waste to the country’s southern region.