First alien clearing activities kick off
The ABI Alien Clearing Project has officially launched, with the first invasive alien clearing teams now in the veld. Alien clearing teams belonging to land user groups involved in the project kicked off their operations on Monday 10 June. It’s believed the outstanding groups will launch in the coming days.
The ABI Alien Clearing Project is working with nine land user groups across the Agulhas Plain. Through funding received from the Department of Environmental Affairs, 220 jobs will be created, amounting to nearly 37,000 person days of work in the first year alone. A total of 28,000 hectares will be cleared in year one.
According to Roger Bailey, Coordinator of the ABI Alien Clearing Project, this is a pioneer project, and is testing new strategies to ensure close collaboration between land users, government and non-governmental organisations. “Through the project, different sectors can achieve our combined targets – both in conservation and job creation.”
The project also enjoyed stakeholder input from the onset, with the planning and roll out overseen by an Implementation Committee, consisting of land user groups, government departments, municipalities, Agriculture, SANParks and CapeNature.
Bailey says, “While we’re hoping to create jobs while protecting our biodiversity, this project also allows us to be strategic and to work as efficiently as possible. We’ve had a strong building phase so far, and while we have a long way to go in rolling out the project, strong relationships have been forged in true ABI-fashion.”
The project will run over the next three years, but it’s hoped this will ultimately become a 20-year alien clearing programme, which will allow gains made to be maintained.
For more information, contact Roger Bailey: firstname.lastname@example.org or tel. 028 388 0713.