Several agricultural officials and senior personnel from agriculture related institutions in Guyana and Suriname today completed a three day Risk Mapping workshop by the United Nations Development Project (UNDP)and the Inter
American Institute for Cooperation of Agriculture (IICA) aimed at building their technical skills and capacities for dealing with impacts of climate change.
The venue was the Boardroom of the Ministry of Agriculture.
Local Representative of the IICA, Wilmot Garnett, said that the aim of the workshop was to facilitate Guyana and Suriname in enhancing their institutional capacity to develop, use and store Risks Maps for Agriculture Risk Management (ARM) and Agriculture Disaster Risk Management (ADRM) for Extreme Environmental Events in the Agricultural Sector.
He said that the use of ICT and modern technologies such as Geographic Information Systems and integrated data management, which the workshop addressed, can provide valuable insights to decision makers to enhance resilience and reduce vulnerability of the agriculture sector in Guyana and Suriname.
Garnett said that the onset of climatic change and variability in the Caribbean region, the second most vulnerable region, presents significant challenges for disaster response and agricultural management.
Building resilience of agricultural production systems to environmental risks of the agricultural sector is necessary, if revitalisation and repositioning of the sector is required to contribute positively to economic, social and rural environmental prosperity.
Unfortunately, limited institutional capacity exists to promote and support agriculture risk management.
The workshop’s enhanced efforts are aimed at remedying the deficits in institutional knowledge and capacities of agriculture related institutions in Guyana and Suriname in climate change adaptation and environmental management themes critical to the sustainable development agendas of both countries.
It also addressed appropriate agro-meteorological and climatic challenges of Institutions, targeted with respect to data requirements to formulate and use risk maps, and also focus specific examples of how this can occur with hands on applications.
The resource persons were David Nicholas Oswald, Founder and President of De Design and Environment Inc. of Canada; and his colleague Geographic Information Systems (GIS) Specialist, Trevor Smith.
Some of the topics included: conceptual framework of risk management, data fusion, risk mapping, information architecture for risk mapping, flood and drought risks (Guyana and Suriname), pest risk/disease maps, and agricultural risk maps for saline intrusion risk among others.
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