National Spatial Plan to be developed

KINGSTON, Jamaica (JIS) — The Ministry of Economic Growth and Job Creation has launched ‘The Process for the Development of the National Spatial Plan’ and signed a contract with Acclimatise Group Limited to draft its technical papers.

The National Spatial Plan, which was conceptualised in 2009, will ensure the optimal use of the nation’s land and marine resources and outline the framework for their effective use and management, along with addressing issues regarding climate change.

Speaking at the launch, which took place at Jamaica House today, Permanent Secretary in the Office of the Prime Minister, Audrey Sewell, said according to the 2012 State of the Climate Report, Jamaica has experienced several storms and hurricanes in the past decade with severe flooding, which has resulted in loss of lives and the destruction of goods amounting to approximately US$129 billion.

She said this is one of the reasons why the Ministry of Economic Growth and Job Creation has a keen interest in the development of the National Spatial Plan, as it will address Jamaica’s issues regarding climate change and help stakeholders to better prepare for unprecedented weather events.

“The Ministry of Economic Growth and Job Creation has placed a major focus on climate change and its impact, since the phenomenon poses a threat to economic growth and development,” Sewell said.

“We would be negligent if we did not prepare for unprecedented weather events. The National Spatial Plan will address the major challenges of climate and disaster risks, while protecting the environment, improving natural resources management and enhancing the quality of the built environment,” she added.

The project has been established through a Grant Agreement signed between the Caribbean Development Bank and the Government.

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