BY LORETTA BRIGIDIA MANELE
SOLOMON Islands Environmental Law Association (SIELA) was established 2009 with the vision to be the national environmental association that envisions a Solomon Islands that appreciates the value of the natural environment.
It was formerly known as the Solomon Islands Lawyers Association back in 2009.
This is according to Ms Senoveva Mauli, chair of SIELA (Solomon Islands Environmental Law Association).
She said that by 2014, the association was revived and re-launched as the Solomon Islands Environmental Law Association (SIELA) and a non-profitable organization.
Ms Mauli who is an environmentalist expressed that she joined the association as chair at that time to assist in explaining law or ordinance based on the environment.
She said the first training they held took place three years ago and was organized for students from SINU (Solomon Islands National University).
Ms Mauli added that they also carried out training for enforcement officers from the Fisheries, Forestry and Mines ministries.
She said SIELA’s six goals target the community and individuals, law reform commission, Members of Parliament, NGOs, educational institutions and the private sector with the overall goal of ensuring that they all have access to quality information.
Ms Mauli emphasized that their objectives are; to encourage environmental management skills, promote law, increase understanding of communities, engage in and advocate for law reform, provide training and legal advice.
Some of SIELA’s achievements to date include; the finalization of documents, re-launch of project manual, strategic plan document and the SIELA capacity needs document.
Ms. Mauli also mentioned that an executive board “Green Council” was formed and currently has 74 members comprising of lawyers, non-lawyers, students and two organizations.
The association since its inception has conducted activities such as trainings, stakeholders’ consultations and a pilot provincial visit.
Membership is open to individuals and incorporated bodies.