Barbados will this week host two high-level environment meetings under the aegis of the Global Environment Facility (GEF).

A GEF Country Support Workshop, as well as a Meeting of the GEF Caribbean Constituency, will be held at the Accra Beach Hotel and Spa, Hastings Main Road, Christ Church, on Tuesday and Wednesday June 16 and 17; and Thursday June 18 respectively.

The GEF, a joint United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), United Nations Development programme (UNDP) and World Bank mechanism, seeks to assist with the protection of the global habitat as well as to promote environmentally sound and sustainable economic development.

In addition to providing developmental assistance to member countries?? for programmes dealing with biodiversity, climate change, ozone layer protection, persistent organic pollutants and land degradation, among others, the GEF also serves as the financial mechanism?? for four?? multi-lateral environmental agreements,?? namely: the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD’, ‘, ‘, ‘, ‘, ‘, ‘, ‘, ‘, ‘, ‘, ‘, ‘, ‘, ‘, ‘, ‘, ‘, ‘, ‘, ‘, ‘, NULL, NULL, 0); the Framework Convention on?? Climate Change (UNFCCC’, ‘, ‘, ‘, ‘, ‘, ‘, ‘, ‘, ‘, ‘, ‘, ‘, ‘, ‘, ‘, ‘, ‘, ‘, ‘, ‘, ‘, NULL, NULL, 0); the Stockholm Convention on Persistent Organic Pollutants; and the Convention to combat Desertification and Drought (UNCCD).

Membership in the GEF requires the identification of a National Operation Focal Point (OFP) and a Political Focal Point (PFP) to the GEF Secretariat. Appointees to these offices are expected to take a leadership role with regard to GEF matters at the country level as well as serve as the liaison between the GEF Secretariat and Implementing Agencies.

Project Manager, Environment Division, Rickardo Ward, and Counsellor, Barbados Mission (Washington), Donna Forde, have been appointed to serve as Barbados’ OFP and PFP respectively.??????

In its capacity as Council Representative and Chair of the Constituency for 2009-2010, Barbados has responsibility for GEF coordination within the Constituency, and for convening two meetings per year for its members, and presenting matters of concern to the Council for its consideration.

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