In the wake of the constitutional change in 2010, the Dutch Ministry of Agriculture, Nature & Food Quality, as part of its Nature Policy Plan for the Caribbean Netherlands, reserved an amount of $9.8 million for a period of four years to fund overdue maintenance of nature. In particular for projects aimed at preservation of coral especially by erosion prevention, improving the sustainable use of nature, and/or improving the synergy between nature, land use (agriculture) and tourism. These funds have come to be known as the “Nature Funds” or “Natuurgelden”.
This funding was provided directly to the island governments of the Caribbean Netherlands. Each island’s government consulted with local nature organizations to propose projects to match their needs with the local political priorities.
The Nature Fund got off to a slow start as both the formulation of proposals and process of review, selection and contracting took a lot of time, and many of the original funding proposals did not meet the criteria and had to be modified or amended and resubmitted. Nevertheless, between October 2013 and October 2017 a total of 23 projects were approved, 10 on Bonaire, 7 on Saba and 6 on St. Eustatius. Each of these projects were completed by October 1st, 2019.
This Special Edition “BioNews” is proud to present the recently premiered videos which highlight the results of some of these projects. These videos are the crowning glory of a successful cooperation between the Dutch and local governments and local nature conservation organizations. Let yourself be inspired by their passion for our beautiful nature in the Dutch Caribbean. DCNA Team