The St. Lucia Times reports that the Caribbean Regional Fisheries Mechanism and CCRIF SPC have signed a Memorandum of Understanding to develop climate-resilient fisheries and aquaculture industries in the region.
The purpose of the MOU is to formalise collaboration around the Caribbean Oceans and Aquaculture Sustainability Facility (COAST) initiative, which will help to reduce the risk that climate change poses to food security and nutrition and to mitigate climate change impacts on sustainable food production as it relates to the fisheries sector.
Specifically, the MOU will facilitate:
- The finalisation of a sovereign insurance COAST product for the fisheries and aquaculture sectors in the Caribbean
- Supporting the rollout of the COAST product, including inter alia communication to improve awareness and understanding among stakeholders, and training for government officials and professionals in the fisheries and aquaculture sectors
- Continual support and promotion of the COAST product within CRFM Member States
- Exploration and promotion of microinsurance products for small enterprises, fishers and other persons in the fisheries and aquaculture industries
- Promotion of climate-resilient fishing, fish farming and resource management practices among CRFM Member States.
CCRIF CEO, Mr. Isaac Anthony indicated that, “We are pleased that through this initiative, CCRIF will add a fisheries/aquaculture product to its current suite of parametric insurance policies for tropical cyclones, excess rainfall and earthquakes – thus expanding the portfolio of catastrophe insurance options for the countries in this region”.
Providing this option to governments in the region will support CRFM’s mandate to promote the Caribbean Community Common Fisheries Policy, specifically the Protocol on Climate Change Adaptation and Disaster Risk Management in Fisheries and Aquaculture.
“Fishers and fishing communities in the Caribbean are facing increasing threats and risks from climate change and related hazards” said Milton Haughton, Executive Director of the CRFM. “We welcome this partnership between the CRFM and CCRIF. The insurance products which will become available will help enormously to reduce the risks and uncertainties, as well as improve resilience of our fishing communities by enabling them to recover and rebuild without delay after disaster events,” he noted.
CCRIF and CRFM have collaborated in the past and CRFM has also participated as a host organization in CCRIF’s Regional Internship Programme.
In 2017, Ms. Yinka Jagbir-Garcia from Trinidad worked as an intern at the CRFM and over a 2-month period assisted with the development of a Model Disaster Management Plan for the Fisheries and Aquaculture sector of CRFM Member States.
[Fishermen take their catch to market with cruise ship in Castries Harbour in background, from the St. Lucia Times ]