Celebrating the Achievements of the GEF Dugong and Seagrass Conservation Project

Bali, Indonesia, 5 March 2019 – Dr Donna Kwan from the Dugong MOU Secretariat attended the closing workshop of the Dugong and Seagrass Conservation Project (DSCP) in Bali, Indonesia from 26 to 28 February 2019. The workshop was funded by the Global Environment Facility (GEF).

The four-year project, Enhancing the Conservation Effectiveness of Seagrass Ecosystems Supporting Globally Significant Populations of Dugongs across the Indian and Pacific Ocean Basins, commenced in 2015 and covered 43 national projects across Indonesia, Madagascar, Malaysia, Mozambique, the Solomon Islands, Sri Lanka, Timor-Leste and Vanuatu. The CMS Dugong MOU Secretariat developed the DSCP between 2011 and 2014, drafting the proposal to United Nations Environment Programme and GEF, and working with project partners to secure funding for the identified projects. The project was executed by the Mohamed bin Zayed Species Conservation Fund, and its implementation was supported by UN Environment with scientific expertise provided by the Technical Group of the Dugong MOU.

The three-day closing workshop was attended by over 60 people, bringing together partners and advisors (including members from the Dugong Technical Group) to reflect on the achievements of the project. The first two days of the workshop focussed on looking back on what the project has achieved. Partners from each country gave presentations on their work under the themes of research, incentives, policy and education and awareness. Panel sessions followed many of the presentations, and valuable discussions ensued. During the panel dealing with research, partners were encouraged to keep using the skills and expertise they have developed under this project, and to use the knowledge collected to trigger conservation outcomes.

The final day of the workshop was spent looking forward and identifying national and regional priorities for Dugong and seagrass conservation into the future. Partners broke up into regional groups to consider what the key threats to Dugongs and seagrasses are presently, to reflect on what the drivers of these threats are and identify what actions they could take to address these.

In closing the workshop partners were encouraged to continue their efforts towards Dugong and seagrass conservation, to collaborate with each other, and to share their knowledge with the broader community.

Last updated on 12 March 2019