Implementation of the Convention
Measures Taken to Achieve the 2010 Target
The National Environmental Strategy of Cuba is being adapted to a new strategic cycle from 2005 to 2010, with measurable targets, which incorporates most of the 2010 biodiversity targets. The protection of areas of particular importance to biodiversity is being incorporated into different plans and programmes, in particular through the National System of Protected Areas. The National Programme for the Management and Conservation of Turtles in Cuba is one of the different actions taken to promote the conservation of species diversity. Actions to be developed have been identified to guarantee the sustainable use of biological resources. Since 1990, when Cuba became a Party to CITES, institutional and legal frameworks have been created to control the international trade of endangered wild flora and fauna. The loss of biodiversity as well as soil degradation, pollution and inadequate management of waters, are among the five main environmental problems in Cuba. It is worth mentioning that Cuba does not foresee importing genetic resources and, although this is not included in the national programmes and strategies, the Law No. 81 considers the fair and equitable sharing of benefits arising out of the use of genetic resources as an environmental principle.
Initiatives in Protected Areas
Cuba has a national system on protected areas (SNAP 2003-2008), which aims, among other things, at covering at least 90% of all types of identified natural landscapes. The approval of the 201 Decree Law in 1999 is the most relevant measure taken by Cuba in order to legally establish a system or network of protected areas. In 2004, 35 new protected areas were approved and 23 additional ones were in the process of being approved. Developing training in all levels and components of the national system on protected areas is one of the strategic decisions of Cuba’s SNAP. Taking into account other international methodologies, Cuba has developed, and is actively applying, a methodology to evaluate the effectiveness of protected area management.
Initiatives for Article 8(j)
Cuba has several programmes related to traditional knowledge. The rules on environmental impact assessment cover the cultural, environmental and social aspects in general and, although no special distinction is made with respect to settlements of local communities, there is a harmony between this process and the Akwé:Kon guidelines. Although the Akwé:Kon guidelines are not being applied in every project, there are some national experiences related to the participation of the local communities in the assessment of the impact on biodiversity. The National Forest Fund (FONAFED) is a mechanism to pay for reforestation and conservation actions, being also a source of employment for the local communities. The Green Map initiative (Mapa Verde) helps communities in finding solutions to their environmental problems (biodiversity, water resources, etc.). Financial support has been given to local communities for the formulation of their development plans. Not having indigenous communities, Cuba gives special attention to the knowledge of certain groups that conserve biological diversity and transmit such knowledge from parents to children. Cuba’s social system encourages the full active participation of women in all sectors of society