Groundbreaking Partnership to Support Environments Protection in the Dominican Republic


December 12th, 2016: Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic – Today the Caribbean Biodiversity Fund (CBF) and El Fondo Nacional para el Medio Ambiente y los Recursos Naturales (Fondo MARENA) signed a ground-breaking Partnership Agreement, which will trigger new annual flows of funding to support environmental conservation projects in the Dominican Republic.

CBF partnership bodyThis represents an important major step toward addressing the long-standing issue of lack of reliable and long-term funding to support environmental protection. This is the first agreement, of an initial set of eight, which the CBF aims to sign with partner national trust fund across the Caribbean.

The CBF and partner national trust funds (such as Fondo MARENA) compose the financial platform that supports a regional effort among 11 countries known as the Caribbean Challenge Initiative (CCI). The CCI seeks to effectively conserve at least 20% of a country’s marine and coastal environment, and to put in place mechanisms that will ensure a permanent and constant flow of resources to achieve this target. The Government of the Dominican Republic is one of the founding members of the CCI.

Fondo MARENA was established to provide funding for projects that help safeguard the environment and natural resources of the Dominican Republic. Fondo MARENA has been receiving financial resources from a wide range of administrative fees collected by the Ministry for Environment and Natural Resources. Fondo MARENA’s establishment has been supported by the Ministry of Environment and Natural Resources of the Dominican Republic and the Global Environment Facility (GEF) through the United Nations Development Program (UNDP).

Asha-Gaye Cowell
Program Officer, Conservation Finance
Asha-Gaye Cowell is the Conservation Finance Program Officer. She has a diverse academic background, which includes a BSc. Economics and Statistics with first class honors, MSc. International Public and Development Management and a Visiting Fellowship Certification from the University of Oxford where she studied Behavioral Economics along with Strategy and Ethics. Complementing her academic prowess is a cross-section of professional experiences, including work with the Caribbean Community (CARICOM), UNECLAC, USAID, the Permanent Missions of Jamaica to the UN, among others. With extensive civic involvement, volunteerism, and strategic partnerships, Asha is very passionate about leadership, international and regional development, economics, youth and climate change.

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