38. The implementation of this SAP over a five-year period will produce a revised programme that will lead to long-term measures to sustain and protect the BCLME. Member states agree to commit themselves to continuing the BCLME Programme beyond the GEF intervention, and will endeavour to (a) adopt appropriate legislation, (b) implement economic instruments and (c) establish a permanent Benguela Current Commission with a supporting Secretariat. A financial plan that will make provision for future sustainable funding will be prepared, including a study on the feasibility of establishing an Environmental Fund.
39. It is envisioned that the BCLME Programme will continue to develop strong links with institutions, NGOs and the private sector within member states and the SADC region as a whole, so promoting the overall objective of closer economic integration.
SUMMARY OF THE FUNCTIONS AND RESPONSIBILITIES OF THE
INTERIM BENGUELA CURRENT COMMISSION The Interim Benguela Current Commission will consist of three representatives from each country, each with a vote. Decisions will be made with majority voting. The terms of office of the Commissioners shall be for six years, one-third retiring after two years and another one-third after four years. A chairperson shall be elected by the Commission and will be rotate every two years. There shall be equality between member states; The IBCC will also have non-voting representation from (a) SEAFO, (b) UNDP (c) UNEP (d) SADC (e) BENEFIT and (f) the Secretariat. The World Bank shall be represented on the IBCC for the duration of the BCLME Programme (five years ). Specialists and representatives of other stakeholders and regional or international organisations can be co-opted onto the IBCC from time to time as appropriate.
Advisory Groups and Activity Centres Associated with the Benguela Current Large Marine Ecosystem Strategic Action Programme (BCLME-SAP)
The purpose of the Advisory Groups is to provide the Secretariat or the PCU with the best possible advice and information on topics key to implementation of the BCLME Strategic Action Programme. In all cases, they will, as part of their duties, respond to requests for advice from the PCU and prepare proposals for the PCU’s consideration at their own initiative. The groups will include experts from specialised focal points of the member states. The Advisory Groups will work closely with other experts, bodies, institutions and industry as they, or the PCU, deem necessary. Involvement with relevant NGOs is also encouraged, particularly in the improvement of public participation and awareness in all of the focal areas they cover. Particular attention shall also be given to including experts in environmental law, environmental economics and public awareness, where appropriate.
Each Advisory Group shall seek to make best use of expertise and institutional capacity within the region and, within its work plan, approved on an annual basis by the IBCC, may request assistance from or assign specific tasks to, any institution or expert that it considers appropriate.
The BCLME-PCU will provide general co-ordination for the Advisory Groups, assigning the management of specific tasks to appropriate officers according to their technical specialisation.
The Advisory Groups shall be supported by three Activity Centres (one in each member state) which shall co-ordinate the necessary programme support and the provision of practical technical support for their work. The Activity Centres shall be created through in-kind contributions by member state governments, as well as with significant funding from donors, especially during the first three years.
Advisory Groups shall liaise with each other where appropriate and joint groups may be set up from time-to-time, particularly on such issues as
The Advisory Groups to be located in Activity Centres are defined and listed below.
Advisory Group on Fisheries and Other Living Marine Resources
The Group will co-ordinate activities and provide technical support for the sustainable management, utilisation and protection of fisheries and other living marine resources of the BCLME. The Advisory Group will gather the basic source of information related to transboundary commercial fish stocks and management strategies including means of capture, installed capacity and protection measures and will be co-ordinate calibration/inter-calibrations for transboundary assessments; socio-economic assessments and serve as a regional forum for stock assessment advice. Information would also be collected on other potentially important living marine resources that are currently not harvested, as well as mariculture projects. These data will be gathered from all national authorities and should document past changes in the production and stock of the region and their relationship to changes in the Benguela Current ecosystem. They will provide the basic source of information for future management strategies, and for the implementation of any future fisheries convention.
The Group will develop proposals and, where appropriate, co-ordinate
(1) harmonisation at the regional level of a legal and institutional framework aimed at sustainable use of living marine resources; (2) improvement of the fisheries resource assessment of the BCLME based on a regional approach; (3) development of projects for conservation, protection and rehabilitation of living marine resources; (4) development of specific techniques for mariculture that do not harm the environment or the biological diversity. The Group will collaborate with regional and international institutions, government bodies and the private sector.
Advisory Group on Environmental Variability and Ecosystem Health This Group will co-ordinate activities and provide technical support for the development and implementation of an early warning system for variability and change in the physical, chemical and biological environment of the BCLME. Development of models to predict transboundary environmental change and assess the overall health of the ecosystem will form a primary role of this Group. The implementation of new techniques for rapid assessment of the Benguela Current ocean and coastal environments will also be pursued. Cost-effectiveness will be a guiding principal for group activities.
The Group will develop proposals for and co-ordinate (1) effective state of the environmental assessment of the Benguela Current Large Marine Ecosystem; (2) modeling of the Benguela Current ecosystem and the interaction between the physical, chemical and biological parameters with a view to improving predictability of extreme events and system wide change; (3) the metocean data buoy (PIRATA) demonstration project in southern Angola-northern Namibia; (4) rapid environmental assessment techniques using towed undulating oceanographic instruments and satellite remote sensing; (5) regional training programmes in scientific and technical aspects of environmental monitoring, data processing and modeling of the BCLME; (6) development of a regional network, contingency plan and reporting system for HABs; (7) mitigation impacts of HABs and community involvement in monitoring.
3. Advisory Group on Marine Pollution The Group will co-ordinate, and provide technical support for, project activities aimed at the prevention, reduction, control and monitoring of all sources of transboundary pollution in the BCLME area. Such activities will include (1) assessment of water quality in the BCLME area, including identification and comparative evaluation of sources of pollution; (2) development of regional protocols and agreements with a view to harmonising policies and standards on water and sediment quality, and on the control of marine litter; (3) development of a regional framework for the monitoring of marine pollution and enforcement of regulations; (4) assessment for the needs for training in marine pollution control, and identification of relevant opportunities and/or development of courses as necessary; (5) development of a regional oil spill contingency plan; (6) development of public awareness of marine pollution issues through the production of relevant educational material; (7) implementation of demonstration projects. In addition, the Advisory Group will liaise and collaborate with relevant regional and international institutions, government bodies, NGOs and the private sector (eg. industry).
4. Advisory Group on Legal and Maritime Affairs
The Group will monitor and advise the PCU (Secretariat) on the emerging legal regimes of the BCLME, measures adopted under it and activities carried out within it, with a view to ensuring (1) the appropriate development of the regime and its efficacy; (2) the consistency of the regime with global international law regimes (such as UNCLOS, UNEP, pollution conventions, the Biodiversity Convention, etc.. (3) the consistency of the regime with regional and other related international law regimes (such as SADC and the projected SEAFO); (4) that harmonisation of national policies within the system are similarly consistent; The Group will where requested to do so by the PCU (Secretariat or a Member State) examine the compatibility of any national measure taken by any Member State with a view to assessing its consistency with the system and advising thereon.
Advisory Group on Information and Data Exchange This group will focus its work on the improvement of information flow and data exchange. In particular, it will oversee (1) Updating the existing Benguela Current information on fisheries, oceanography, environmental variability and ecosystem health, diamond mining and other minerals and deposits, offshore oil and gas exploration and production, coastal developments, and socio-economics; (2) develop of an integrated regional data base and Geographic Information System (GIS) for the BCLME; (3) compile and update a bibliography of the region and a BCLME website; (4) strengthening the e-mail network and improve Internet connections to the web services for principal data centres and Ministries of Environment, Fisheries and Marine Resources and Energy and Mining for the exchange of information and data including meta-data; (5) develop a regional Internet facility comprising environmental data, sets of data obtained from various national, regional and international programmes, copies of historical data and datasets from global data centres such as the World Data Centre (WDC), the Global Ocean Observation System-Living Marine Resources (GOOS-LMR) and the Intergovernmental Oceanographic Commission (IOC); (6) co-operate with an NGO network in data exchange; Furthermore it will organise training on data exchange, promote and support UN agency sponsored distance-learning programmes such as the International Waters IW:LEARN and TRAIN-SEA-COAST Programmes and also assist other networks in the region.
A major part of the BCLME Programme activities will be implemented by a network of specialist institutions co-ordinated by Activity Centres. Each government will agree to host one of these centres. The centres will be based on national institutions selected by the Commissioners at the first meeting of the IBCC or by the Programme Steering Committee. The Activity Centres will work closely with the PCU in order to establish links with the national institutional focal points i.e. specialised institutions selected by Governments to participate in each of the networks. With the support of the PCU, the Activity Centres shall organise Working Parties , conduct training and present recommendations to the Programme Steering Committee.
The Activity Centres are as follows:
Activity Centre 1: Living Marine Resources and Biodiversity Conservation
Activity Centre 2: Environmental Variability, Ecosystem Health and Pollution
Activity Centre 3. Capacity Strengthening and Networking
(functions of Activity Centres to be defined)