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Volume 4 Issue 1V

July - September 2008

EPA takes the Environmental Message to Carifesta X The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) joined with the rest of Guyana and the Caribbean in celebrating the historic Carifesta X. The EPA took on the challenging but exciting role of coordinating the Environmental segment of the Youth Village by ensuring the participation of key stakeholders.

Activities ranged from pictorial displays, videos, documentaries, display of craft items , quizzes and speed drawing competitions to interactive surveys, demonstrations and bird watching. These activities attracted huge crowds of all age group on a daily basis.

The Youth Village was held at the National Park from August 25 29, 2008. The Environmental Centre was hosted by the EPA along with several environmental partners such as the Guyana Forestry Commission (GFC), Guyana Amazon Tropical Bird Society (GATBS), Iwokrama, World Wildlife Fund (WWF), Guyana Ma- There is no rine Turtles Conservation Society (GMTCS) and Conservation doubt that the International (CI). environmental message was at The activities coordinated by the environmental advocacy groups spread Carifesta X were very interactive and aimed at promoting environmental awareness and fostering better attitudes towards the environment. and the EPA The EPA booth at Carifesta X 2008 They stimulated the interest of patrons who were not only youths wishes to extend gratitude but adults as well. to the organiThe dĂŠcor of the booth brought alive various aspects of the natu- sations which were instrumental in affording us the us the opportural environment so that patrons could have a unique experience. nity to participate in such a memorable event and to its partners for helping to make this grand event a success.

Editorial Note

In this Issue... EPA takes Environmental message to Carifesta X

In this quarter, many activities were successfully completed. The EPA coordinated and participated in a number of events on a national level and a range of activities were executed in various parts of the country. These include Environmental Camps, interactive sessions and visits to Project sites.

Environmental Camps Successful Inter - Schools Jeopardy Competition International Ozone Day 2008 Noise Applications show a steady increase Environmental Authorisations Kids corner Yupukari Kitchen - Garden Project Implemented Meriwau Livestock Project under Kanuku Mountains Study Areas begins GMTCS Education and Public Awareness Program starts Amazing Facts 1

A number of projects under the Protected Areas Small Grants KfW funded projects were also implementation while training stipulated under the Darwin Initiative was completed. As we enter the final quarter of the year, let‘s strive to work collaboratively with all stakeholders to effectively execute our mandate.

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EPA hosts Environmental Camps The EPA hosted Environmental Camps, one of which was conducted at the Nature School of the Guyana Zoological Park during the month of July, 2008. Representatives from environmental clubs in Georgetown and its environs benefited from this Camp.

Activities were tailored to improve communication and interaction between clubs and the EPA as well as strengthen relations among environmental clubs. During the Camps, youths were involved in both indoor and outdoor activities which included a tour of a farm which promotes the use of environmentally sound practices and utilized hydroponics in On a zoo safari in the Guyana Zoo farming practices, presentations, discussions and group work. Activities were packaged in a fun way to stimulate innate curiosities and enhance confidence and focused on developing skills and enhancing critical thinking.

Youths from the community of Agatash in Barticathe were the beneficiaries of the other Cam which was facilitated through the Ministry of Youth and Culture. The Camps served to train youth in School Yard Ecology Methodology, proposal writing and leadership skills as well as raise awareness of environmental issues.

The participants were able to develop a knowledge of the inquiry cycle in learning about the environment and better understand some environmental issues such as habitat and species relationship.

On the way to see first-hand Hydroponic farming

Social issues dealt helped in the development of communication skills and enhanced awareness and knowledge of HIV/AIDS..

Inter –Schools Climate Change Jeopardy Competition The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), held a jeopardy competition among selected primary schools in Georgetown and in Essequibo. This competition was a follow-up to the activities held in observance of World Environment Day (WED) 2008; which was celebrated under the international theme - ―C02, Kick the Habit Towards a Low Carbon Economy” which focused on the issues of climate change and the importance of reducing carbon emissions.

2-day period on separate occasions at the National Library in Georgetown and the Anna Regina Multilateral School on the Essequibo Coast respectively. Students benefited from an interactive lecture and were provided with appropriate reading materials. A quizz based on the presentation was administered and the three highest scorers were selected to compete in the Jeopardy. In Georgetown, students of the Coven Garden Primary School emerged winner in the Primary category while those of the North Ruimveldt Multilateral School emerged winner at the secondary

The competition sought to raise awareness of the issues of climate change through interaction. The competitions were held over a 2

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International Ozone Day 2008 International Ozone Day 2008 was celebrated under the theme ‗Montreal Protocol– Global Partnerships for Global Benefits’. This year the EPA targeted Students of Secondary Schools in the Charlestown—Georgetown area. The Students assembled at the Dolphin Secondary School for the activity. They were treated to an interactive video presentation on the Ozone Layer, participated in a Quiz based on the Video presentation and enjoyed lively discussions. In addition, the students were given the opportunity to use their creative abilities by using discarded materials to make useful items such as aquariums and wind mills. The Agency also collaborated with the Hydro-meteorological Department to co ordinate an exhibition at the National Library.

Intensely concentrating on a Quizz at the International Ozone Day forum

Newspaper articles on the Ozone was also done, a panel discussion for broadcast on national television was coordinated as well as appearance on the Guyana Today Show.

Inter - Schools Climate Change Jeopardy Competition Level.

The EPA extends gratitude to the Ministry of Education and the In Essequibo, students of the V. C. Nunes Primary School excelled participating schools for making this activity successful. at the primary level while the Anna Regina Multilateral School came The MOE is one of the EPA‘s key partners in the thrust to proout on top in the secondary mote environmental education in schools. category. The competition was both informative and fun and students were very enthusiastic and eager to learn. The activity also served to pique students‘ interest in environmental issues. This jeopardy competition was the first of its kind The finalists in the Primary category of the done by the EPA and was Georgetown Jeopardy competition conceptualized as the Agency seeks creative strategies to deliver environment education. The overwhelming response received from the participating schools indicated that the approach was highly successful. As the Agency extends the scope of its work, other approaches to environmental awareness will be applied to different target groups across Guyana. 3

Part of the climate change prepping session in Essequibo before the jeopardy competition

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Noise Applications show a Steady Increase decibels during the day and 55 decibels at night and industrial: 75 decibels during the day and 70 decibels at night.

Noise is regulated to protect people and the environment against Noise Pollution. The problem of high noise levels has become prevalent in our society today, pervading our homes, businesses, public and private transportation and public places. It is a cause for concern not only because it creates annoyance but also because it is linked to hearing loss, stress and other human health conditions.

The EPA received thirty (30) Noise Applications during the period July-September. The EPA has observed a steady increase in noise applications over the past few months and expects this trend to continue during the last quarter of the year. The EPA is working closely with the police to regularize this problem.

Legislation empowers the Police to enforce against Noise and the

Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is required to regulate Noise under the Environmental Protection Noise Management Regulations (EPR –NM) (2000).

Several applications for long-term Noise Permits were received for Liquor Restaurants, Discos and Bars. Applications for short-term Noise Permits were for fund-raising activities such as Barbecues, Fairs, and Fun Days.

The EPR –NM (2000) is the most recent of the noise regulating legislations and requires that persons engaging in specified activities apply for Noise Permits. Noise Permits are valid for a maximum of one (1) year, after which, it could be renewed.

The permit would require that the person responsible for producing noise put certain measure in place to minimize the effects of The Guyana National Bureau of Standards has developed Interim noise on the surrounding environment and people. Guidelines for Noise Emission that indicate permissible noise Defaulters, on summary conviction of a noise related offence may levels for activities that are residential, commercial and industrial . be required to pay between $30,000 to 750,000 and can face up to Permissible noise levels for the different categories are: residential: one year imprisonment. 55 decibels during the day and 45 decibels at night; commercial: 65

Environmental Authorisations The number of environmental applications received for the third (3rd) quarter has decreased significantly. This quarter recorded the lowest number of environmental applications for the year. However, this may be attributed to a decline in investment during this period but the EPA excepts to see an increase in the final quarter of the year.

Blending and Bottling Plant. The Agency also facilitated nine (9) projects through the Environmental Impact Assessment process. Seven (7) of these projects had commenced the process in 2007. No new projects were required to conduct EIAs during this period.

The Environmental Management Division made significant efforts Fifty-two (52) applications were received for both new and existing to focus on verification of these existing industries. The Agency projects. Of these, twenty-eight (28) were for new projects and conducted approximately twenty-nine (29) verification visits, most twenty-two (22) for existing operations. of which were in the wood sector. This trend is expected to conThere was one (1) application for Renewal of Environmental Au- tinue. thorisation and one (1) application for a Variance of Environmental Authorisations. The EPA despite several limitations this year has been working assiduously to enhance environmental management this quarter . During this period forty-seven (47) Environmental Authorisations The EPA is also committed to ensure that persons comply with were granted. This included the Demerara Distillers Limited - environmental standards. 4

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Kids’ Corner Ozone

rd Puz o W s s o r Science C


Test you knowledge in Ozone Layer Science and Ozone Depletion in this cross word puzzle. Clues Across 3. Microscopic animals harmed by excess UV 6. Especially harmful band of UV radiation 11. One atom of this can destroy over 100,000 ozone molecules 12. Unnatural thinning of the ozone layer by human activities 13. Skin ___: One of the worst health effects of too much sun 14. ___ conditioning: one type of equipment that used CFCs 15. Unit for measuring column ozone 17. ___osphere: Part of the atmosphere containing the ozone layer

Down 1. The southernmost continent; location of the ozone hole 2. Wind pattern over Antarctica that isolates the ozone hole 4. Ozone ___: region containing most atmospheric ozone 5. Montreal ___: Treaty protecting the ozone layer 7. Chemical that makes methyl bromide an ozone-depleting substance 8. Molecule that absorbs UVB radiation from the sun, protecting Earth 9. A substitute for CFCs that's much less damaging to the ozone layer 10. Ultra___: Harmful solar radiation 16. Measure of how much a chemical harms the ozone layer 5

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Yupukari Kitchen-Garden Project is Implemented A ‗Kitchen-Garden Project‘ focusing on improving local agriculture and food security in Yupukari and promote the conservation of the Kanuku Mountains is currently underway.

rials and equipment (fertilizers, rakes, hoes, seeds, etc.), transporting materials and equipment to and from the village, installation of the irrigation network, construction of fences, and the distribution of materials and equipment to farmers.

The Project seeks to foster crop diversification and income generation in Yupukari Village, establish an irrigation system for smallscale agriculture and supply the Village with agricultural infrastruc- The Project will encourage community members to move away ture and equipment. from slash and burn agriculture. In so doing, this initiative will The project costs are estimated at G$6,514,615, of which reduce the conversion of forests to agricultural land, and foster G$5,994,615 will be provided by GPAS, and G$520,000 will natural reforestation. The reduced threat to local forest will signifibe contributed by the community. The project commenced in July cantly contribute to the conservation of the proposed Kanuku Mountains Protected Area and its linked ecosystems. and is expected to end in December, 2008. The people of Yupukari are unable to establish farms within their village due to a lack of water during the eight month dry season. Community members therefore farm in the surrounding forests, where slash and burn agriculture is practised. The resulting loss of forest is becoming a major threat to the Kanuku Mountains and its linked ecosystems.

The EPA is the coordinating agency for these projects and is therefore, very instrumental in securing funding, aiding the communities in the development of their proposals and sourcing the necessary materials for the various projects. The ―Yupukari Kitchen-Garden Project‖ is being implemented under the KFW Small-grants Component of the Guyana Protected Area System (GPAS).

This project will allow for farming within Yupukari by installing an irrigation network and providing farming infrastructure and equipment. Project activities include the purchasing of construction materials for fencing and the irrigation network, purchasing of farming mate-

GMTCS Education and Public awareness Project Starts The Guyana Marine Turtles Conservation (GMTCS) through the EPA and with funding from KfW is in the process of implementing an education and public awareness programme.

Four (4) endangered species of sea turtles nest at Shell Beach annually. This is a rare occurrence as most nesting beaches in the world only has 1 or 2 species of sea turtles nesting on them. Shell beach is home for several Amerindian communities which have traditionally harvested these turtles and their eggs for food and income for over 70 years. The other main factors contributing to this practice is the lack of alternative income and awareness activities in this area.

The project focuses on environmental education and awareness of the main sea turtles using communities in and adjacent to the proposed Shell Beach Protected Area. The project is expected to be implemented over a period of six(6) month and the first phase ended in July , 2008. The main goal of the project is to ensure the future existence and population recovery of all four (4) species of marine turtles known to nest in Guyana by engaging teachers, students, communities, fishers and the general Guyanese public in environmental and sea turtle education and awareness projects.

GMTCS in an effort to address this problem has established North West Organics and Moruca Embroidery brands as alternative income projects within Shell Beach and the surrounding communities.

Activities include, development and implementation of an Environment Education Training Programme for teachers, development and /or reactivation of wildlife/environmental clubs and accompanying wildlife kids; community workshops to address sea turtle by catch and a national awareness programme.

In addition, the impact of this education and awareness initiative will be assessed through GMTCS‘ annual sea turtle monitoring activities. A number of education materials will also be produced and distributed as part of the programme. 6

July – S e p te mber, 2008

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Meriwau Livestock Project Begins Another project—―Meriwau Livestock Project‖, is currently being implemented by the Shulinab Village Council under the KfW Small Grants Component of the Guyana Protected Area System (GPAS) Project. This Lifestock Project will focus on improving food security for the Meriwau satellite community whilst promoting the conservation of the Kanuku Mountains.

Expected Impacts... Social: The project will increase the availability of meat to the Ministry of Education school feeding programme and to villagers. This will result in increased attendance to school and an improved learning environment for the youth of Meriwau.

The project is intended to assist in establishing a cattle herd in the Meriwau community and supply cattle ranching infrastructure and equipment for members of the community.

The project will also increase community income and reduce the amount of time spent on hunting and farming. The increase in surplus and time available to villagers can be used for the implementation of other community development projects.

The project costs are estimated at G$3,078,600, of which G$2,452,600 is to be funded by KfW and G$626,000 is to be contributed by the community. The project, to be implemented over a period of six (6) months, got underway in September.

Economic: This project has the potential of generating income for the settlement. Meat and produce will be sold to the school feeding programme and neighbouring communities.

Lifestock rearing in Meriwau will go a long way in providing an alternative source of food for members of the community who are primarily dependent on hunting as a means of living. Hunting is increasingly becoming unsustainable and is also posing a threat to local biodiversity. This project will therefore increase local food security and reduce the need for commercial hunting and fishing in the Kanuku Mountains. The Project activities will include the purchase and transport of 27 cattle (25 cows, 2 bulls), and 2 working horses, the purchase and transport of construction materials, site preparation and the construction of a 3.2 km (2 miles) fence, ―Baracoon‖ and corral. By establishing a community cattle ranch in Meriwau, villagers will have access to an alternative source of food and income. As a result, the project will address local livelihood needs, while reducing the demand for wildlife. This livelihood approach will ultimately contribute to the long – term conservation of the proposed Kanuku Mountain Protected Area. Lifestock rearing will also allow for the collection of organic manure to increase the production of local kitchen gardens. Some of the animals will be used to pull bullock carts for the transportation of produce from farms to the community market. The management of the herd will require the hiring of a ranch-hands who will be paid in kind (a cow) annually. The project will therefore address a number of local needs, reduce the demand for wildlife, and contribute to the long – term conservation of the Kanuku Mountains.


With the availability of cow manure, some farmers will be able to boost the production of subsistence and commercial crops. In the long – term, bull drawn carts will be able to transport more crops to market in a shorter time. This would allow farmers to diversify their crops, cultivate more perishable produce, and access markets in surrounding communities. Ecological: Another major benefit of improved food security will likely be a reduction in intensity to fishing and hunting by providing an alternative protein source to the community as the project will reduce the need to harvest fish and wildlife within the Kanuku Mountains. Additionally, the manure supplied as a by-product of cattle ranching can be used to increase crop production without increasing the area of land under cultivation. As such, the project may also improve the efficiency of land-use within the community‘s farming areas. The EPA proposed a number of areas for protection under the Guyana Protected Areas System because of their ecological and cultural value. One such area is the Kanuku Mountains where Meriwu is located. The proposed Protected Areas are currently under study and as such the EPA is using a collaborative approach to manage them.. One such approach is to involve and empower communities to effectively and efficiently manage communities within the protected Areas. The EPA as the coordinating agency for Environmental management in Guyana has secured funding for such Projects under the KfW Small Grants Projects.

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Amazing Facts Did you know that? Capybara is the largest living rodent in the world and weighs up to 65kg (140 1b) . Adult capybaras may grow to 130 centimetres (4.3 ft). They have slightly webbed feet, no tail, and 20 teeth. Their back legs are slightly longer than their front legs and their muzzles are blunt with eyes, nostrils, and ears on top of their head. Capybaras are semi-aquatic mammals found in wild densely forested areas near bodies of water. The Capybara is an herbivore (more specifically, a graminivore, grazing mainly on grasses and aquatic plants, as well as fruits and tree bark. The Capybara's jaw hinge is non-perpendicular and they thus chew food by grinding back and forth rather than side-to-side.

THE GREEN LEAF The Green Leaf is published quarterly by the Environmental Protection Agency, Guyana. This publication is intended to promote awareness of the work of the Environmental Protection Agency.

Editorial Committee: Sharifah Razack Padmini Persaud Sonia Gumbs-Luke Candacie Brower - Thompson Renwick English Michelle Chow. E-mail: Mailing address:

Capybaras are coprohagous, meaning they eat their own feces as a source of bacterial gut flora and in order to help digest the cellulose in the grass that forms their normal diet and extract the maximum protein from their food

Environmental Protection Agency, Lot 7 Broad and Charles Streets Charlestown Georgetown. EIT DIVISION: Ground Floor 7 Broad and Charles Streets Charlestown Georgetown.

About Our Logo... Our logo is the passion fruit leaf. Yellow passion fruit ( Passiflora edulis flavicarpa) is native to the Amazon. It produces beautiful flowers and sweet– tart fruit. It was named by the Spanish missionaries in South America. Passion fruit is widely grown throughout the tropics and subtropics. The leaves are used in traditional medicine to settle edgy nerves, also for colic, diarrhea, dysentery and insomnia. 8

Green Leaf July - September 2008  

EPA - Guyana Newsletter

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