The Pacific Ridge to Reef Programme is a GEF multi-focal area programme guiding coordinated investment of GEF grant funding across its focal areas of biodiversity conservation, land degradation, climate change adaptation and mitigation, sustainable land management, sustainable forest management, and international waters in PacSIDS. It is a multi-agency initiative involving the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), and the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) as GEF implementing agencies.
Executed regionally by the Pacific Community through the Pacific Regional Ridge to Reef International Waters project (Pacific Regional R2R IW), the operations of the R2R programme is supported in areas of science-based planning, human capital development, policy and strategic planning, results-based management, and knowledge sharing. Implemented through the GEF Pacific R2R IW project the R2R IW national pilot projects are designed to strengthen R2R integration by establishing synergies between sector agencies and the GEF National R2R STAR Projects*, governments and communities, civil society and the private sector. The Programme Coordinating Unit (PCU), hosted by the Pacific Community’s Geoscience Division based in Fiji, is tasked with the provision of technical, operational, reporting and monitoring support as requested by the participating PacSIDS.
To achieve this, the RPCU will:
- Organize and facilitate a programme of periodic planning and coordination workshops for national R2R project team;
- Act as secretariat to the Regional Steering Committee and the Regional Scientific and Technical Committee;
- Lead regional scientific and technical activities;
- Facilitate the consolidation and sharing of sectoral knowledge and expertise by ensuring that scientific and technical aspects of the programme meet international standards;
- Lead the development of regionally appropriate knowledge tools to support evidence-based coastal and marine spatial planning in PacSIDs;
- Strengthen communications between the PCU and its stakeholders for improved decision making.
To support the outreach and uptake of regionally accumulated scientific knowledge in policy making and planning, the programme will facilitate exchanges between:
- Government and the scientific community through meetings of the Regional Steering Committees and national Inter-Ministerial Committees;
- Community leaders and local government through round-table meetings. To improve the relevance of ICM investment from ‘Community to Cabinet’, the programme will harness the support of traditional community leadership and existing governance structures.
Governance and Coordination
R2R Program Coordination Group (RPCG)
Providing coordination function among the GEF implementing agencies is the Ridge to Reef Programme Coordination Group (R2RPCG). R2RPCG is chaired by UNDP with FAO and UNE as members. SPC through the RPC provides the secretariat function of the R2RPCG. UNDP is the lead Pacific R2R Program Coordinating Agency (R2RPCA) and oversee final design and implementation of national demonstration projects in several of the PICs (Cook Islands, Fiji, FSM, Nauru, Niue, Samoa, Tonga and Tuvalu). UNEP serves as GEF agency for the R2R national projects in Palau and RMI while FAO for Kiribati, Tonga and Vanuatu. In addition, UNDP serves as GEF agency for ICM/IWRM linkage, policy development and capacity building regional project financed primarily under the International Waters (IW) focal area.
R2R Program Steering Committee (R2RPSC)
A R2R Program Steering Committee (R2R PSC) guides the entire R2R Programme. This body meets annually to review progress, provide strategic guidance and advice, and facilitate program level coordination and communication. It includes representatives from each PIC (preferably the chairperson of the national interministerial committee), GEF agencies, and SPC. The GEF Pacific Constituency could undertake a bigger role beyond being the recipient of regular briefing about the program. To the extent that most of the designated R2R PSC members may also be country representatives to the GEF Constituency, it may be possible to piggy-back the R2R PSC meetings to the GEF Constituency meetings, thus ensuring efficiency.
National Inter-Ministry Committees (IMC)
At the national level and each child projects, a National Inter-Ministry Committees (IMC) is established. The IMC or project board, and building on the structures that have already been established in each PICs through the existing UNDP/UNEP/GEF IWRM project, the national IMCs will meet bi-annually to review progress, provide strategic advice and support adaptive project management. It is composed of relevant local and national government agencies, NGO/CBO, private sector and UN system participants. It provides overall national oversight functions and directs the implementation of each child projects.
Regional Program Coordination Unit (RPCU)
On top of its usual management function for the Regional IW R2R project, the RPCU provides coordination, capacity building and knowledge sharing platform for the Pacific R2R Program. The RPCU led by its RPC serves as the secretariat to the R2RPSC, R2RPCG and the RSTC. The RPCU prepares all relevant documents and charge with documenting and disseminating the outcome of each meetings. Moreover, the RPC also provides technical and programmatic support not only for the regional project activities but also for the national R2R projects as may be requested by the PICs.