Basseterre, St. Kitts, November 10, 2020 (SKNIS): In order to increase management strategies while balancing sustainable use and conservation of the marine environment, the Federation of St. Kitts and Nevis is in the process of implementing the Caribbean Regional Oceanscape Project (CROP) according to Tricia King, Marine Management Area and Habitat Monitoring Officer at the Department of Marine Resources during her interview on October 28, 2020, with ZIZ on day 2 of the CROP consultations.
The blue economy is a term in economics relating to gaining benefits from a particular resource, in this case, the marine environment while integrating conservation methods and promoting sustainable use of these resources.
Mrs. King said that “This is important because we recognise that we are small island developing states and yet we are also large oceanic states, therefore we need to create that balance to use our resources sustainably and still have for our future generation.”
“The Government of St. Kitts and Nevis in 2016 formulated and established the St. Kitts and Nevis Marine Management Area which is a two-mile radius around the coastline of St. Kitts and Nevis, and it has five use zones,” Mrs. King said.
“These use zones are Fishing Priority, Conservation, Transportation, Multiple Use, and Recreation/Tourism that serve different purposes, and they also help with the management of the marine environment surrounding the coastline of St. Kitts and Nevis,” she said.
“It’s important for us to continue that work that was started in 2010 through The Nature Conservancy and USAID. They helped us through marine spatial planning to actually determine these zones work and how they can exist through multiple consultations using several stakeholder groupings throughout St. Kitts and Nevis. The CROP project is putting another layer on that process and they are helping us to really explore the Blue Economy taking into consideration all of the work that has been done before,” said Mrs. King.
She outlined what was to be expected upon the completion of the consultations saying “At the end of this process, we should have the St. Kitts and Nevis Coastal Master Plan and Marine Spatial Plan. This would include planning for the Blue Economy, the offshore marine zoning framework, as well as an integrated coastal zone management plan.”