When launched the Micronesia Challenge was one of the world’s most ambitious conservation commitments. The progress and impact in its first 14 years has been significant with many jurisdictions having met the percentage area goal under some form of management for either marine or terrestrial:
Leveraged $82 million for conservation efforts including approximately $20 million to a regional Micronesia Challenge endowment
Increased conservation of near-shore marine resources and terrestrial resources across Micronesia with more than new 70 areas under conservation across all jurisdictions
Improved science-to-management decision making
Communities leading in conservation - capacity development efforts doubled the capacity and the speed of progress to effective conservation
Increased interest and opportunities for youth
Inspired similar regional island commitments around the world including the Caribbean Challenge Initiative, Aloha+ Challenge and Coral Triangle Initiative supported through the Global Island Partnership
Local conservation efforts were prioritized on the global stage and provided greater benefits than if they were to have acted as a jurisdiction alone
The Micronesia Challenge Evaluation Summary is based on extensive consultation with our Micronesia community and key stakeholders locally and globally through the Micronesia Challenge Evaluation undertaken in 2020.
As we look to the next decade of action and implementing our expanded goals to effectively manage 50% of marine resources and 30% of terrestrial resources by 2030 and to be a strong voice for climate change and sustainability in Micronesia. The Micronesia Challenge 2030 is a path to permanent protection of our invaluable natural resources from our mountain tops to the far reaches of our Exclusive Economic Zones.
As we strive forward, we want to learn from and share our progress, successes, challenges and recommendations.
The evaluation and summary is a testament to the willingness of those involved in the Micronesia Challenge to take a hard look at what worked, what did not, and make changes moving forward by building on existing strengths and addressing gaps and challenges.
Over the past 15 years, the Micronesia Challenge has been a highly successful collaboration. But our work is not yet finished.
The Evaluation Summary is a concise summary on the Micronesia Challenge Governance and Policy, Sustainable Finance, Conservation Actions and Goals, and Capacity Development efforts.
It highlights our collective accomplishments and challenges in 2020 and provides recommendations to consider as we move towards our new 2030 goals.
The Micronesian community sees tremendous value in the Micronesia Challenge and want to continue working together to achieve these new ambitious goals, and you can help make this happen.
Micronesia Challenge Evaluation
There has been significant progress, but this is not enough. The Micronesia Challenge is about achieving “effective conservation” and this needs a longer term effort to 2030. The Micronesia Challenge Evaluation provides a set of recommendations on how we build on this which will be built into the 2030 plans.
The Full Micronesia Challenge Evaluation is available HERE: >>>>>http://bit.ly/MCeval2020<<<<<
Strengthening and Enabling the Micronesia Challenge 2030
Executive Summary for the Project Proposal
Submitted on November 18th, 2020 (Under GEF Review)
This Global Environment Facility (GEF) International Waters (IW) project “Strengthening and enabling the 2030 Micronesia Challenge” strengthens regional- and national-level marine resource management in the Micronesian Large Ocean States of the Republic of the Marshall Islands (RMI), the Federated States of Micronesia (FSM), and the Republic of Palau (Palau) with indirect benefits to the U.S. Territory of Guam and the U.S. Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands . In partnership with the Micronesia Challenge Regional Office (MCRO), the Micronesia Conservation Trust (MCT), the Marshall Islands Marine Resources Authority (MIMRA), FSM’s Department of Resources & Development (R&D). Palau’s Ministry of Natural Resources, Environment & Tourism, The Nature Conservancy (TNC), and Stanford Center for Ocean Solutions (COS), the project partnership will support strengthening of national marine resource management planning aligned with Micronesia Challenge 2020 goals and support planning for the Micronesia Challenge 2030 (see Appendix J).
The three-year GEF IW project proposes a framework approach that facilitates technical dialogues through national working groups to develop policy options for strengthened management of and optimized regional collaborations for priority marine resource issues. The project will build off key baseline activities, including the recent support for the Micronesia Challenge 2030 conservation goals by the Micronesia Island Forum (MIF), national strengthening of Protected Area Network (PAN) legislation, and a recent collaborative working group model facilitated by COS supporting implementation of the Palau National Marine Sanctuary (PNMS). The project will leverage existing partnerships, momentum, and lessons learned to engage all three Micronesia governments and will build coordination and cooperation for the next phase of the Micronesia Challenge—leveraging experience sharing and capacity building to ensure success for future shared regional and national resource management goals.
The project is designed with three components aimed at national and regional support, combined with knowledge management and monitoring and evaluation. The first project component will achieve national-level goals through national working group meetings that will develop science-based recommendations to support advancing integrated management of marine resources aligned under Micronesia Challenge 2020 and 2030 goals. The second project component aims to strengthen the Micronesia Challenge Regional Office (MCRO) through capacity building and significantly raising local, regional, and global awareness to of the Micronesia Challenge, and the coordination role of MCRO by taking advantage of major ocean-related events. A third project component aims to capture the wealth of knowledge generated from the Micronesia Challenge over the past decade, to disseminate nationally, regionally, and also internationally through IW:LEARN.
This GEF IW project also leverages recent intergovernmental momentum, including the 2016 Call to Action by the three Micronesia presidents at the 13th International Coral Reef Symposium Leaders’ Summit, the 2017 Pacific Judicial Council Environmental Law and Science Conference, and a 2018 Association of Pacific Island Legislatures resolution. Collectively these recent actions assist progress towards important 2020 milestones, including the Sustainable Development Goals, Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) Aichi Targets, and the Micronesia Challenge. The project also aims to support country needs at key ocean events, including the Our Oceans Conference, United Nations Ocean Conference, and the CBD Conference of Parties 15 (to be confirmed based on national policies and post-pandemic realities).
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- 2006 Report, Micronesia Challenge Action Planning Meeting
- 2009 Report, 2nd Micronesia Challenge Regional Meeting
- 2011 Report, 1st Micronesia Challenge Terrestrial Measures Meeting
- 2012 Report, 4th Micronesia Challenge Measures Meeting
- 2012 Report, 2nd Micronesia Challenge Terrestrial Measures Meeting
- 2012 Report, 1st Socioeconomic Measures Meeting
- 2014 Report, Micronesia Challenge Measures Core Group Meeting
- 2015 Report, Micronesia Challenge Measures Meeting