The project will expand the existing Protected Areas (PA) system through the establishment of two new terrestrial PAs and three new marine PAs (the first marine PAs in the country), and will address systemic issues by implementing key elements of St. Kitts and Nevis’ Protected Areas System Plan, thereby strengthening PA management capacities and the ability to reduce or eliminate threats to biodiversity.
The existing systems of protected areas (PAs) in St. Kitts and Nevis is limited to 3 terrestrial PA units on the island of St. Kitts; of there, only the Central Forest Reserve was established primarily for ecological conservation. There are no terrestrial PAs on the island of Nevis, nor are there any marine PAs in the country. In addition, apart from one historic site, there is no active management of PAs in the country at either the system or site level.
The proposed project will improve ecosystem representation in the PA system; establish/strengthen PA management operations at key sites; and strengthen institutional, policy, legal/regulatory, information and financing frameworks at the PA system level. At the site level, the project will enable the legal establishment of five new PAs (two terrestrial and three marine) and the operationalization of these sites as well as the two existing terrestrial PAs that currently have no management. In so doing, the project will expand the PA system from two terrestrial sites totaling 5,260 hectares without any effective management, to four terrestrial sites totaling 8,810 hectares and three marine sites totaling 11,693 hectares, all of which will be actively managed.