Launch of Pacific Regional Observatory for Protected Areas and Biodiversity

9 September 2014

The Biodiversity and Protected Areas Management (BIOPAMA) Programme is pleased to announce the commencement of an important new partnership that will see the Secretariat of the Pacific Regional Environment Programme (SPREP) as the host organization for the Regional Observatory for Protected Areas and Biodiversity in the Pacific Islands region.

The European Union-funded BIOPAMA programme, jointly implemented by IUCN and partners, aims to address threats to biodiversity in African, Caribbean and Pacific countries. More specifically, it will improve the long-term conservation of biodiversity by promoting the use of the best available science and knowledge and build capacity to strengthen policy and decision-making on biodiversity conservation and the management of terrestrial and marine protected areas.

SPREPs mandate, mission and strategic plan align with the objectives of the BIOPAMA programme for the Pacific, and with its established ties to key regional organizations, projects and government agencies, SPREP is ideally placed for establishing and operating the Pacific Regional Observatory for Protected Areas and Biodiversity.

SPREP also currently implements closely-related activities such as the Pacific Environmental Information Network, environmental monitoring and reporting on Multilateral Environmental Agreements including national support for Convention on Biological Diversity commitments, and the newly developing Pacific Islands Protected Areas Portal.

“SPREP’s strategic plan incorporates within all four of its strategic priorities the need to strengthen knowledge management, monitoring and reporting on key environmental and performance indicators. This new partnership will assist SPREP’s ongoing work and bring funding and technical resources to address biodiversity conservation and protected area management aspects. It is also timely with the launch of the ‘Framework for Nature Conservation and protected Areas in the Pacific Islands Region 2014-2020’” said Mr David Sheppard, Director General of SPREP.

The Regional Observatory for Protected Areas and Biodiversity will be a regional hub to support decision-making and more effective protected areas management and biodiversity conservation in the Pacific. More than being a source of knowledge, the regional observatory will facilitate networking of practicioners, experts and institutions, and will coordinate technical and policy support to national agencies and regional organizations.

For more information contact Tony O’Keeffe, Protected Areas Coordinator, BIOPAMA Programme, at IUCN Oceania, [email protected].


The Biodiversity and Protected Areas Management (BIOPAMA) programme aims to address threats to biodiversity in African, Caribbean and Pacific (ACP) countries, while reducing poverty in communities in and around protected areas. It is financially supported by resources from the intra-ACP envelope of the European Commission’s (EC) 10th European Development Fund (EDF). BIOPAMA combines improving data availability with capacity development to strengthen protected area management. It has two main components: one concerning protected areas, jointly implemented by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) and the EC’s Joint Research Centre (JRC), and another dealing with access and benefit sharing (ABS), implemented by the Multi-Donor ABS Capacity Development Initiative managed by Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) GmbH.

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