|Overview : |
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Grenada’s biodiversity is being threatened by unsafe agricultural practices and encroachment from human settlements, resulting in habitat loss and fragmentation, overexploitation of biological resources, and pollution. The presence of invasive alien species and climate change are also drivers of biodiversity loss in the country. Land degradation has affected approximately 50% of land resources in Grenada; deforestation and fragmentation of forests in the form of forest clearance to allow for residential and commercial development, non-sustainable agriculture, forest fires, and coastal tourism development are the main forces behind land degradation in Grenada. Integrated agroecosystem management, which incorporates Sustainable Land Management (SLM) and biodiversity conservation into production landscapes, may provide a solution to biodiversity loss and land degradation in the country.
SLM and biodiversity conservation objectives need to be mainstreamed into national land use planning, sectoral policies, and legal frameworks. Incorporated into SLM are climate smart agriculture (CSA) practices that can contribute to ensuring the long-term sustainability of agricultural production at the community and producer levels. However, there are several barriers that hinder the advancement of long-term and effective implementation of SLM and CSA practices and the mainstreaming of biodiversity conservation into landscapes in Grenada. These include:
insufficient systemic and institutional capacity for integrated SLM and biodiversity conservation landscape-level planning.
lack of access to financial mechanisms and technical and information services, thereby limiting investment in sustainable agricultural planning and practices; and
limited awareness, understanding, and knowledge of CSA and SLM techniques and practices integrated with biodiversity conservation.
The project’s objective is to operationalize integrated agroecosystem management through mainstreaming biodiversity conservation in productive landscapes and increasing the resilience of agricultural systems. The project will use an integrated landscape management approach that will allow combining resilient agricultural and conservation practices in productive landscapes.
This strategy will contribute to reducing the loss of biodiversity of global and local importance and the degradation of land in Grenada.
Project Component 1 will focus on systemic and institutional capacity development for supporting integrated landscape management at the national level. An information management database and monitoring system and land use planning process that include biodiversity mainstreaming and SLM considerations will provide baseline information to support decision-making. Strengthened information management capacity and an updated regulatory framework will be complemented with an improved biodiversity conservation and land use management capacity of the Forestry and National Parks Department and the Land Use Division, and the Ministry of Carriacou and Petit Martinique. These actions will provide a framework for mainstreaming biodiversity concerns into spatial management and promoting resilient agriculture, both climate-resilient and resilient by not depleting natural capital and not leading to biodiversity loss.
Component 1: Systemic and institutional capacity increased for integrated landscape management at the national level
Outcome 1.1: Biodiversity conservation mainstreamed in land use planning and management practices and agricultural sector policies and legislation, as a result of improved systemic and national institutional capacity for landscape management for biodiversity conservation.
Outcome 1.2: Strengthened systemic and institutional capacity for promoting SLM.
Output 1.1: A central geospatial biodiversity, ecosystem, and land use database and monitoring system to be assessed, updated, and operationalized within the national land management policy in the national and legal regulatory framework, with comprehensive land use survey to support land use planning, baseline terrestrial biological /ecological assessment, assessment of existing key biodiversity areas (KBAs), and a profile of water sources
The project will support the development and initiation of a comprehensive land use survey to support land use planning, and a profile of water sources with monitoring programmes. To this end, the project will assess, update, and operationalize a central spatial information management database for SLM, CSA, and biodiversity and ecosystem conservation within the framework of the national land use policy. The project will build upon the existing Land Use Division (Ministry of Agriculture, Lands and Forestry) geographic information system (GIS) and its information related to land cover, soil types, agriculture, and PA coverage, as well as other databases within national agencies such as the National Water Information System. However, currently much of this information is outdated and limited, with no new land use survey data, biodiversity, or ecological assessment information or monitoring and tracking system.
A Light Detection & Ranging (LiDAR) survey was recently completed under the Disaster Vulnerability Reduction Project supported by the World Bank that will allow developing thematic data including vegetation cover and land use maps. The project will conduct a needs/gap assessment of the existing database to identify what information is already available, and what the major information and technological gaps are. The needs assessment will also provide a baseline to propose a strategy and identify opportunities to bridge the existing gaps, as well as guide the design of the M&E system to support enhanced CSA, SLM, and biodiversity conservation. The M&E system will be based on optimizing the existing sources of information; the design of the M&E system and associated database will contribute to sound decision-making and participatory planning of natural resources use and conservation. Broad-based multi-stakeholder participation will be pursued to ensure proper appropriation and involvement of different users and beneficiaries. The Land Use Division of the Ministry of Agriculture, Lands and Forestry will be responsible for managing, maintaining, and updating this database at project completion.
The information management database and monitoring system will include a coordination mechanism to support data-sharing between agencies, ministries, universities, non-governmental organizations (NGOs), private interests, and other stakeholders with appropriate data-sharing protocols and security in place. The system will also serve as a point of reference when prospecting for new sites for foreign investments related to tourism, mining, and other sectors.
The project will actively engage in achieving data-sharing agreements and facilitating emplacement of institutional systems to ensure sustainability, including with the Ministry of Agriculture, Lands and Forestry, the Ministry of Education, Human Resources and Religious Affairs, the Ministry of National Security, Public Administration, Home Affairs, Information, Communications and Technology (ICT), and the Ministry of Finance, Planning, Economic Development and Physical Development.
The project will consider different data-capture methods such as crowd sourcing, employee input, and automated technology, and will assess tools such as a relational database to link field-based information with computer-based information management. Data management systems will be developed to examine issues of standardized methodologies and metadata protocols.
The design of the information management database and monitoring system will be of national scope, considering a short-term implementation and operation targeted to the areas prioritized by the project and will be done in close collaboration with the Department of Statistics.
The project will measure the efficacy of the different methods and strategies to operationalize the information management database and monitoring system, whose lessons learned, and knowledge acquired would promote replication, scaling-up, improvement, and sustainability. In addition, the design of the central information management database and monitoring system will also consider the use of CSA-related tools such as the Climate Change, Agriculture and Food Security (CCAFS) CSA programming and indicator tool.