In the Caribbean region, coastal countries are highly dependent on the ocean and their coastal and marine resources. Many threats to the region’s marine and coastal ecosystems persist, such as unsustainable coastal development, climate change, overfishing, and marine pollution. Furthermore, weather and climate extremes, sea-level rise as well as coastal flooding and erosion, continue to negatively impact the tourism industry, which is an important contributor to employment, foreign exchange and economic growth in the region.
Integrated coastal area management is an important tool in achieving sustainable development, and it is too complex to be dealt with through traditional sectoral planning. Strategies must be coordinated between sectoral implementing agencies and involve all stakeholders.
Building on previous activities and available knowledge, the overarching objective of the ad hoc Expert Group Meeting is to further enhance the awareness and capacity of national experts and decision makers in the Caribbean region to effectively integrate sustainable development priorities related to oceans and coastal areas into national planning and implementation processes that involve all stakeholders, as well as to define trans-boundary initiatives with neighboring countries. In addition, the ad hoc Expert Group Meeting aims to provide an opportunity to engage in discussions on how to best implement and follow-up Rio+20 decisions with regard to oceans and seas.
Organized by the Intergovernmental Oceanographic Commission of UNESCO, UNDESA and ECLAC within the Framework of the International Year of Small Island Developing States 2014.