BY SAMIE WAIKORI
CONSERVATION groups in East Are Are recently completed a two-day legal awareness workshop at Ahetaha in Manawai, East Are Are.
The workshop was facilitated by Project Coordinator of Solomon Islands Environmental Law Association (SIELA), Ms Kenya Kenieroa to 23 participants representing a total of 10 conservation groups.
In a statement received from Ms Kenieroa, the aim of the workshop was to support the groups with necessary required legal information to help them boost and protect their conservation initiative through law.
Also, part of the workshop is SIELA’s aim to pave way for conservation groups towards the Protected Areas Act (PAA), to enable them establish Protected Areas.
The awareness programme covers key environmental laws of Solomon Islands such as Environment Act, 1998, Fisheries Management Act, 2015, Mines and Minerals Act, 1990, Forest and Timber Utilization Act and the Protected Area Act, 2010.
And the focus of discussion the acts was drawn to the legal process and the agencies responsible in enforcing the Acts.
The workshop was beneficial to the conservation groups as they now aware of legal process and how to implement activities under their conservation management plan and develop other conservation works.
Participants were grateful to host SIELA for the first time and benefited from information disseminated on environment-related laws in their location.
A participant, Mr Reginald Wate thanked SIELA for information learned on the content of the Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) and understanding its legal aspects.
Another participant, Mr Francis Airu also thanked SIELA and expressed his group’s interest in the Protected Area Act, 2010 and requested template 1-16 of the Protected Area Act Toolkit.
He said their community is now in the process of mapping their proposed area and will ensure they complete the outstanding legal process very soon.
SIELA thanked Ahetaha Water Conservation (AWCA) for hosting the venue and inviting SIELA as legal body that disseminated legal information on the Environment-related laws of Solomon Islands during the workshop.
SIELA also acknowledged Pacific People Advancing Change (PPAC) for financially supporting the two days legal awareness workshop.