Comments on this example:
Environmental management in Fiji has not been much of a success because
- The government had not seen the importance of integrating environmental
considerations into economic policy making.
- Leading to no actual implementation of incorporating environmental
concerns into the decision-making process.
- The lack of coordination among departments and considerable
overlap between environmental and housing/urban development
issues within the Ministry of Housing and Urban Development.
- The shortage of financial resource allocation from the
government to the Department of Environment.
This was probably because environmental problems were still considered a low priority problem when compared to development or improvement in the quality of life. Also, environmental damages were still not visible and not effecting the peoples lifestyle as much as today. Very similar to other countries in the World, environmental management was given significance after when the damages were almost irreparable.
Today, Fiji is currently developing its Sustainable Development Act, proving that the government is aware of the connection between development and environment and that the country is heading towards the direction of sustainability.
Sustainability of the project:
Awareness and visions:
The Fijian government is well aware of environmental problems and had made certain steps towards abatement, which is setting up the Department of Environment. However, in the actual implementation, the DOE does not have the authority to cease projects that are environmentally unsustainable. This is because the government still sees that sacrificing minor environmental damages for development is acceptable.
Improvement in either the environment or economic condition with no harm to the other:
The rating is given a '3' because the intension for abatement, by setting up the DOE, could not be technically implemented and development is still at the price of environmental destruction.
Adaptability of the project to other situations:
It is adaptable for any country to establish a Ministry of Environment or Department of Environment as long as a country is truly committing to manage environmental problems. However, to avoid the problems that Fiji is experiencing, which is conflict of interest within the Ministry of Housing and Urban Development, the location of DOE should carefully be considered beforehand in order to place DOE under a ministry that could support the functions of environmental management.
|Process of decision making and implementation:
Framework for coordination:
A framework that will enable the DOE to receive more cooperation from other departments within the Ministry of Housing and Urban Development is desperately needed. Otherwise, DOE cannot perform its duty in which to encourage integration of environmental concerns into development policies and the conflict of interest among departments within the Ministry could not be resolved.
Degree of coordination and cooperation between government departments: In this example, the rating received a '4' because the degree of cooperation is low which has led to the failure of the DOE to perform its functions.
The rating has been given a '4' because the DOE is still not functioning to its full purpose, due to the lack of cooperation it has been receiving from other ministries and departments. When setting up a new department such as the DOE, requires both manpower and financial investment. However, the investment made to setting up the DOE has not been utilized to its maximum yield because the DOE is still unable to perform its functions, which is to create awareness and conscientiousness to other government bodies that would result in sustainable development policies.