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Minister’s Message for World Refrigeration Day 2020

A Message from The Honourable Trevor A. Prescod, J.P., M.P.


Ministry of Environment and National Beautification


June 26, 2020

Unveiling the All-New “Biodiversity Barbados”


“Biodiversity Barbados” had its humble beginnings as the Sustainable Land Management site in 2013.  Developed as an output of the UNDP-GEF Sustainable Land Management Medium-sized Project (SLM-MSP), the website was originally designed solely to house information related to Barbados’ efforts to attenuate land degradation through reforestation projects, institutional strengthening and spatial planning.

National Biodiversity Strategy and Action Plan and The Biodiversity Policy Workshop

Senior Environmental Officer Ms. Kim Downes Agard commenced the workshop by welcoming the the attendees of the workshop, She specially welcomed the Honorable Minister Trevor A. Prescod, J.P., M.P. and the Permanent Secretary Daphne Kellman of the Ministry of environment and National Beautification. She noted that the consultants would present the revised NBSAP and the Biodiversity Management policy.

The Honourable Trevor Prescod, Minister of Environment and National Beautification, gave brief remarks. The Minister highlighted that Barbados is a rich hotspot of biodiversity with high levels of native animals and plants, which makes their conservation one of our government’s highest priorities. He stated that the Global Environment Facility (GEF) has provided funds for the Ministry to undertake the process of revising its NBSAP, updating the core policy decisions taken in 2002 to the context in which we currently live, and aligning them with Barbados’ current fiscal and policy environment. Following the Minister’s address, Ms. Kim Downes Agard thanked the Minister for his words which set the tone for the workshop.

Conservation of the Barbados Leaf-toed Gecko

The endemic Leaf-toed gecko (Phyllodactylus pulcher) was rediscovered in 2011 after several decades of being assumed extinct. The leaf-toed gecko was assessed as Critically Endangered by the IUCN in 2017. Subsequent studies have indicated low densities in small areas of limestone cliff habitat on the north and south east coasts of Barbados.

Invasive predatory species have been observed to overlap in range with the gecko. Of most concern are rats and mongooses, although cats and centipedes are also responsible for mortality. In addition, the invasive Hemidactylus mabouia house gecko, may be a competitor and is found in built habitat adjacent to habitat of the endemic gecko.

The primary objective of this project is to address the specific challenge posed by invasive mammalian and other predators to the leaf-toed gecko. The gecko will be protected through predator removal and exclusion fencing. The enclosure site may be used to display what is one of Barbados’ only endemic vertebrate species within a confined but natural setting, for educational, research and possibly ecotourism purposes.

Best Practices in Green Monkey Deterrence: A Manual for Farmers in Barbados
Credit: Kevin Best (2020)


The issue of the introduced green monkey in Barbados is a frequent topic of discussion nationally.  While the green monkey population must be controlled to ensure that Barbados has a thriving agricultural sector, the monkey is also an interesting component of Barbados’ rather depleted biodiversity and is a tourist attraction. The species is also listed in Appendix II of the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES).

World Day to Combat Desertification and Drought 2020

Today, Barbados joins with the rest of the world in celebrating World Day to Combat Desertification and Drought—or Desertification and Drought Day for short—under the theme “Food. Feed. Fibre“.

The aim is to encourage changes in consumption and production patterns in order to make adequate land available for other uses, to meet the high demand. These changes may include, but are not limited to, reducing food waste, buying produce from local markets and farmers and wearing clothes for a longer period of time or buying or swapping used clothes.

UNCCD Press Release: Desertification and Drought Day 2020

Contributed by the UNCCD Secretariat

The cost and consequences of the land transformation grossly underestimated says the UN

The cost and consequences of land use change are underestimated as demonstrated by COVID-19. Investing in the over 400 million hectares of land earmarked for restoration will help to build back better and safeguard our relationship with nature.

Ibrahim Thiaw Desertification Day Message: Your Choice Matters

Contributed by the UNCCD Secretariat

Mr. Ibrahim Thiaw
Executive Secretary of the United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification (UNCCD)
(Credit: UN Environment)

This year, living under the shadow of COVID-19, choices seem to have vanished for many of us. 

We can’t choose where we go, how we work or how we celebrate with our friends and families.

We should be celebrating the just-ended Decade on Desertification for example.