Outcome 2: Enhanced IAS prevention and surveillance operations at the island level on Taveuni, Qamea, Matagi and Laucala (Total Cost: USD 4,221,000,GEF: USD 721,000 Co-financing: USD 3,500,000)
Outcome 2 is focused on inter-island movements in the area of Taveuni, Qamea, Matagi and Laucula, at
risk from GII invasion and will be supported by the following outputs:
Establishment of collated database of information on IAS present on Taveuni, Qamea, Matagi
and Laucala and island-specific black lists of high-risk species not established.
Improving inspection and quarantine services and reduced entry and spread of IAS into and
between Taveuni, Qamea, Matagi and Laucala.
Improved training of key personnel on the four islands, including biosecurity officers, military,
police, community members and other stakeholders, for inspection, control and management to
prevent inter-island IAS spread.
Baseline conditions for this outcome (without GEF project):
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Biosecurity for Taveuni, Qamea, Matagi and Laucala remains as is (limited at best) or is improved slowly
in a piecemeal fashion with no overall comprehensive strategy. No source of comprehensive information
will exist for IAS on these islands, making it difficult, if not impossible, to fully manage established IAS, to
develop EDRR capacity or to prevent incursions of new species. Current staffing and resources is limited.
Currently biosecurity services in the four-island area are focused on review and inspection of the roll-
on/roll-off ferries as they arrive and the larger morning passenger ferries which move between Taveuni
and Vanua Levu. There is no established inspection service on Taveuni, although there are numerous
established entry points both on Taveuni and Qamea. No or very limited inspections are provided for
smaller watercraft moving passengers and goods between the four islands and also to and from Vanua
Levu. In addition, no biosecurity services are currently provided for landing or departing airplanes and for
transport ferries and smaller craft. Currently, there are no quarantine or treatment facilities on any of the
islands in the four-island biosecurity area. There is no manifest currently associated with the roll-on/roll-
off ferries to assist biosecurity officers with targeting high-risk cargoes. Currently there is little or no space
and/or time available for biosecurity officers to conduct random inspections of passengers, vehicles or
cargo as they are off-loaded from ferries. Newly engaged biosecurity officers receive an initial two weeks
of training that cover all topics. Biosecurity officers are then assigned posts and are on probation for 3-6
months. This training will not improve significantly.
Alternative for this outcome (with GEF project): Improved biosecurity will lead to better protection of natural resources, food security, human health,
livelihoods and cultural aspects. Additional facilities, improved resources, increased workforce and
training will be instituted to improve biosecurity within the four-island area. Sufficient staff will be
employed and trained to provide the minimum essential biosecurity services at all established jetties on
Taveuni. A systematic way of identifying high-risk vehicles and cargoes arriving on the roll-on/roll-off
ferries will be put in place. Improved quarantine and treatment facilities will be at least minimally
established at the main sea and airport on Taveuni. The establishment of inspection services for arriving
and departing aircraft will likely be instituted. Inspection services for air and sea craft arriving and
departing Laucala will be available and random inspections of persons, cargo and craft arriving to Taveuni
will likely be in place. Improving these and other elements of the biosecurity services for the four-island
area will safeguard these islands from the arrival and establishment of additional IAS. Government co-
financing will support the above actions on a long-term basis through the establishment of a Four Island
(at division or sub-division) multi-sectoral IAS taskforce (FIIT) or working group, improved biosecurity staff
and facilities, vehicles and communication equipment, quarantine and incineration facilities, veterinary
services, vehicle and watercraft sanitation facilities, and enhanced biosecurity inspections of inter-island
domestic cargo and passengers.
The complementary GEF increment will provide technical support and limited equipment for development
of a collated database of information on IAS on the four-islands site and preparation of island-specific
black and white lists, technical support and training for improving IAS prevention and management
capacities in the four-islands site, and technical support for improving biosecurity at all ports, jetties,
wharfs and landing. Improved training in all aspects of biosecurity services for front-line inspectors as well
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as other agency staff on the four islands will provide for more comprehensive inspection/quarantine
services at ports of entry and improved detection of arriving pests. Improving training for domestic
services will better safeguard against the spread of established pests currently of limited distribution
Output 2.1 Collated database of information on the IAS present on Taveuni, Qamea, Matagi and Laucala and island-specific black lists of high-risk species not established
A single database will be developed regarding IAS present on these four islands. It will list known IAS on
each island and the relative range and population sizes of incursions. Information on known impacts of
each species as well as of attempted or on-going management actions will also be collated. This database
would be available to all key stakeholders involved in IAS prevention and control. Once operational, the
database will serve as a framework for developing a similar national-level IAS database for Fiji. During the
second half of the project, the database will be broadened in geographic scope to cover the whole of Fiji
(see Output 4.1). Data storage and maintenance will occur at the national level.
A four-island specific black and white list will be developed for the four islands and updated as needed.
Black lists would in part be developed from known IAS not present in Fiji but posing a high risk of invasion,
and in the case of the four-island area, from high-risk IAS known to be in Fiji but not thought to be
established within the four-island area. The black list will include species or species groups that are
forbidden for introduction into the four-island group. The island black lists (one for each of the four
islands) would supplement the national black list by including those additional species that are not
permitted entry into the four islands.
In the same manner, a white list of species that are clearly permitted
entry in the four-island group will be established. Again, this should be based on the national white list
and likely will exclude some species that are permitted entry into Fiji, but not into the four-island group.
All species not on either the black or white list that are that are petitioned for entry to one or more of the
four islands will need to have a risk assessment (conducted by BAF and funded by the importer) completed
to determine if an entry permit can be provided. Guidelines for this process will be developed. Risk
assessments would include known attributes of the species in question including invasiveness in other
locations as well as has how the species has been treated in other neighboring countries. The draft black
list will be developed within the first year of project implementation. Island databases would be linked
into a national database through existing technologies
Indicative GEF-financed activities under Output 2.1 include:
Establishing a collated database of information on the IAS present on Taveuni, Qamea, Matagi
Preparing an island specific black (and white) list.
Developing procedures and guidelines for risk assessment for species that are neither in the
black or white lists that are petitioned for import.
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Risk assessments will be financed by the importer, while BAF will finance the costs of technical staff and
operational costs to undertake the risk assessments and for the long-term management and operation of
Output 2.2 Improved inspection and quarantine services and reduced entry and spread of IAS into and between Taveuni, Qamea, Matagi and Laucala
This output will help establish more comprehensive biosecurity for the four-island group, reducing the
potential for pest species to enter and establish within the four-island group and move between these
islands. The specific activities to be undertaken to improve inspections and quarantine will be defined by
Indicative GEF-financed activities under Output 2.2 include:
Establishment of a Four Island IAS Taskforce (FIIT) to support overall efforts with biosecurity in
the four-island zone. This Taskforce would include various government and non-government
partners that operate in the area. The Taskforce should be established in the first six months of
Standardized systems and processes developed and in place for inspection of good, persons and
vectors arriving at the four-islands.
Complementing the GEF-supported activities would be a number of other activities that would be part of
BAF’s long-term strategy, some of which will be supported by co-financing commitments, and others as
part of the longer-term commitment of the government to improve biosecurity (refer to Annex 3 for
details of these activities). These will include the following activities: (i) improved communications
between BAF headquarters and staff on Taveuni; (ii) improved BAF office in Taveuni with securable
holding room/laboratory space with basic facilities and equipment; (iii) holding facilities (quarantine) for
plants and animals on Taveuni; (iv) local veterinarian services at Taveuni or training 2 or more biosecurity
officers on Taveuni to serve as Para-vets; (iv) restriction of movement of soil, including bags of potting soil
and similar items requiring pest free certification or treatment prior to shipping; (v) random inspections
for passengers and cargo on arriving ferries; (vi) development of a system for identifying potential high-
risk cargo for both boat and air cargo; (vii) sanitation requirements for vehicles being transported on roll
on/roll off ferries; (viii) sanitation regulations for boats and ships transiting between islands; (ix) provision
of adequate resources to ensure biosecurity inspections are feasible for air and watercraft departing
and/or arrive at these islands; (x) provision of incinerators, quarantine and treatment facilities minimally
at Matei Airport and the Salia Wharf; (xi) expanding existing biosecurity inspections for watercraft,
passengers, baggage and cargo between Taveuni and Viti Levu, Vanua Levu and other areas within the
country; (xii) reaching agreement with regular transporters to facilitate inspection services on Taveuni
both prior to departure and on arrival; (xiii) implementing biosecurity inspections at airports for aircraft,
passengers, baggage and cargo prior to arrival and departure on any of these islands; (xiv) four full-time
inspection officers on Taveuni for conducting inspection/quarantine processes at the Salia, Lovonivonu,
Wariki and Matei, and three additional part-time officers to service arrivals and departures for various
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landings to/from Qamea, Matagi and Laucala; and (xv) the recruitment of additional officers to support
improved biosecurity services at Taveuni.
Output 2.3 Improved biosecurity training in best practices for inspection, control and managementto prevent inter-island IAS spread Training for biosecurity officers needs to be improved to support better national and local biosecurity
results. To support improved training, BAF will set up a long-term training program as part of the BAF
overall strategy. The various elements of this program would be determined via consultation and these
elements would support BAF objectives. Various specific training programs would be defined in the Fiji
NISFSAP (Output 1.2) and the BAF Strategic Plan (Output 1.3). Possible training elements include: (i)
localized training for biosecurity staff and partners in on pest identification, hull inspections, early
detection, rapid response and database entry and use; (ii) cross-training of staff from various front-line
agencies such as police, health, immigration, customs, airports authority and safety on protocols, pest
identification; (iii) training biosecurity officers in the use of existing X-ray machines, particularly in the use
of the dual-image machines would improve ease of use and detection; (iv) canine team training for both
the handlers and the dogs; and (v) training of Para-vets to ensuring the health of canines, where veterinary
services are unavailable.
Indicative list of GEF-financed activities under Output 2.3 include:
Completion of a needs assessment for biosecurity training of agency staff and community groups
on the four islands based on the national training plan.
Development and implementation of a long-term IAS training strategy and plan for the four-
Organizing local and national training programs for frontline biosecurity staff and community
groups to improve capacity for and broaden responsibility for managing and control of inter-island
movement of IAS.
Outcome 3: Long-term measures for protection of terrestrial ecosystems and their biodiversity in Taveuni, Qamea, Matagi and Laucala (Total Cost: 4,203,000 GEF: USD 1,203,000, Co-financing:
Outcome 3 is focused on the four-island site for targeted IAS efforts and also serves as a pilot to test
improved biosecurity systems and processes ahead of broader application across Fiji. It is aimed at long-
term measures for protection of terrestrial systems in the four-islands through the eradication of GII.
The achievement of Outcome 3 is supported through the following outputs:
Comprehensive survey and public outreach program developed on Taveuni and the
surrounding islets and to determine the status of GII on Taveuni Island.
A detailed eradication plan developed and implemented simultaneously on Taveuni, Qamea,
Matagi and Laucala.
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Reduction of GII sightings/captures on Qamea, Matagi and Laucala by 50% or more by the end
of the project.
Survey of native banded iguana on island(s) where GII are known to be established.
Survey and assessment to determine local community perceptions of damage and impacts of
GII on food crops and livelihoods.
Baseline conditions for this outcome (without GEF project): GII was deliberately introduced to Qamea by a private, foreign landowner in 2000. GII have since become
established island-wide on Qamea and Matagi, and probably also Laucala island. They have been found in
isolated incidents on Taveuni at four widely-separated localities, but it is not yet known if one or more
populations are established if any. This same species has become widespread throughout the Caribbean,
achieves high population densities in many of these areas (i.e. populations of hundreds of thousands or
millions), and is credited with a range of negative impacts, including decline of native lizards, defoliation
of trees and shrubs (both native and ornamental), undermining of roads and levees through burrowing
activities, power outages, and interference with flight operations at airports. Typically, GII populations
have been ignored for 30–40 years before damage becomes noticeable enough for humans to become
concerned – and at which point eradication is impossible.
Without the GEF project, it is likely that the GII would not be eradicated from Fiji, and similar impacts can
be expected to occur, with increased impacts on Fiji’s biodiversity. Devastation of several garden crops
(e.g. tapioca, cabbage, spinach) is likely to occur, making subsistence farming difficult or impossible in
decades to come and decreasing the country’s food security. Undermining of beach areas and roadsides
by burrowing activities can be expected to exacerbate storm-surge damage with continuing climate
change, as would defoliation of mangrove areas. Fiji has three species of endemic iguanas (Brachylophus bulabula, B. fasciatus, B. vitiensis) and the GII potentially threatens these species through competition,
direct aggressive behavior, or transmission of diseases or parasites – although these impacts may not
become noticeable until higher GII densities. It may threaten endemic plants as well through herbivory.
GII are excellent swimmers, and the distances separating Qamea from Taveuni, and Taveuni from Vanua
Levu are easily within their capabilities. If eradication is not achieved from the four island group, it is only
a matter of time before GII become widespread throughout Fiji, either by their own dispersal capabilities
or because humans spread them throughout the islands – the greater their range becomes in Fiji, the
more likely that humans will find them and move them around. Because GII can successfully ride
vegetation rafts for several hundred kilometers during hurricanes, and because Fiji is nested among
several other island groups in the South Pacific, if GII are allowed to become widespread throughout Fiji,
it will likely be only a matter of time before they also colonize surrounding nations like Vanuatu, New
Caledonia, or the Solomon Islands – nations that have even fewer resources to respond to an invasion
To date, small-scale efforts have been made to conduct public outreach and GII control. But activities have
not been conducted with sufficient planning, coordination, resources, or duration to provide a feasible
chance at successful eradication. At present, only a team of ten staff is in the field conducting GII control
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on Qamea (with occasional visits to Matagi and Laucala). Field surveys and outreach have never been
done on Taveuni.
Alternative for this outcome (with GEF project): This project will allow for an immediate program of comprehensive survey and public outreach on Taveuni
and an increase in the search effort and take rate of GII on the islands of Qamea, Matagi, and Laucala. If
the former demonstrates that GII are well established on Taveuni, then eradication of GII from Fiji will
likely be impossible, and management efforts will need to be re-focused to containment of GII to those
four islands through improved local biosecurity. If comprehensive surveys and public outreach on Taveuni
indicate that no population of GII is yet established on that island, then eradication from the country may
still be feasible because Qamea, Matagi, and Laucala are sufficiently small that eradication may be
achievable. However, to achieve that outcome, search and removal efforts on those islands will need to
be increased dramatically (at least five-fold over current efforts), use improved techniques and strategies
(see Annex 6), be planned and implemented with skill, and coordinated in a very ordered sequence. New
techniques will be employed that will increase effectiveness of GII removal (e.g. use of trained detector
dogs, use of small-caliber rifle, thermal imaging, night vision, infrared technology) or evaluated for
effectiveness in improving take rates (e.g. surveillance with drones). All eradication efforts are high-risk
endeavors because success is never guaranteed. But the risk of taking no action and allowing GII to
continue spreading throughout Fiji (and from there to other archipelagos) is much higher through
reduction of food security, loss of native biodiversity, and exacerbation of climate-induced damages.
Successful GII eradication will require many years of coordinated government and community, and public-
private partnership model, efforts because populations are already fairly large, animals are difficult to
detect, and control efforts to date have not been commensurate with those needed for eradication. To
achieve eradication, the Government of Fiji will significantly increase its efforts and commitment
immediately and sustain that commitment through to final eradication, a period likely to be ten years or
more. GEF funding will help supplement that increase in funds from the Government of Fiji, serving to
provide the accelerated effort needed to quickly depress GII numbers over the next four critical years and
provide essential access to best practice eradication techniques and tools. GEF funds will be used to (i)
hire the technical advisors and coordinators needed to assist in planning and oversight of the eradication
program and training and assessment of hunters and canine teams; (ii) purchase, train, and care for dog
teams; and (iii) purchase equipment needed to undertake the eradication program. This will ensure that
eradication staff will be properly trained in use of the needed control tools, the feasibility of GII
eradication will be reliably assessed, and that eradication efforts will be put on a professional footing that
maximizes the chances of final success. It will also lower the risk of GII migration to new islands out of the
already infested areas. Complementary engagement and outreach activities with local stakeholders and
communities (Output 3.1) will broaden the sense of responsibility for IAS management and leverage
additional effort in searching for GII and reporting sightings to eradication teams, and minimize the further
spread of GII through improved biosecurity awareness and greater ownership and commitment from local
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The Government of Fiji will finance as a long-term measure the recruitment of eradication teams for the
four islands, office space and operational costs for GII eradication, and a commitment to additional
funding and staffing to sustain the eradication and outreach effort beyond the timeline of the GEF project.
Output 3.1 Comprehensive survey and public outreach program developed to determine the status of GII on Taveuni
The status of GII on Taveuni remains unknown. Determining this status must be the highest priority for
the project because it, in turn, determines the best options for managing and eradicating GII in Fiji. This
project will assess whether GII have successfully become established on Taveuni through the
implementation of two simultaneous strategies. First, a comprehensive public outreach program will be
established that will endeavor to reach every community on the island multiple times to enlist the help of
as much of the population as possible and maintain their continued sensitivity to the topic. The outreach
strategy will be built upon the core message of “IAS and biosecurity is everyone’s responsibility” to
broaden support for both the GII eradication and increase personal and stakeholder responsibility for
strengthened IAS management more broadly.
Public outreach will be used to inform communities of the threat the GII poses to their livelihoods, but,
more importantly, will seek from them all recent reports of iguana sightings and their cooperation in
quickly reporting any further sightings. All credible sightings will then be followed up by project staff to
assess whether GII inhabit the reported locality. Outreach would be continued at a high rate for a period
of at least 1-2 years to ensure the best possible coverage of the island’s population. Seeking reports of GII
from island inhabitants is critical for evaluating whether any populations are established. Having the
general population informed of the threat that GII pose, staying sensitive to possible sightings, and quickly
reporting sightings to project staff will tremendously increase the chances of detecting GII when at the
low population densities characteristic of an incipient population. Outreach activities will be targeted to
all sectors of the population and project staff will include representatives from those same communities.
Outreach efforts will by supported by a team that will include some members dedicated to reaching Fijian
of Indian descent communities (this team will also be responsible for surveying likely iguana-nesting areas
during the months of August to December, see below). Additionally, this team will be supported by
agencies that provide specific capacity support for various elements of the awareness program. An overall
multi-year awareness/outreach strategy will be developed that includes specific benchmarks to ensure
both engagement and improvement over time.
Outreach efforts will be well planned and the hiring of an international consultant to facilitate and lead
efforts to develop an outreach program for the four islands is highly recommended. This individual should
have the capacity to bring together the diverse cohort of partners that will be needed to ensure that both
planning and on-the-ground activities are comprehensive and targeted to significantly improving
community support for IAS prevention and management across the four-island area. Once this outreach
effort has been successful, it can be used as a blueprint for similar programs throughout the country.
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The initial four-island outreach program should begin development in the first year of project
implementation. This program should involve numerous partners including iTaukei Affairs, Education,
Lands, BAF, Environment, Police, Immigration, FRCA, USP, FNU and other groups with existing supportive
capacity. Initial consultations with these partners for the development of the outreach program should
take place in beginning of the first year of project implementation, building on broader consultations with
these stakeholders completed during project development. Once an outreach program strategy has been
developed, implementation will begin immediately, possibly in the third quarter of the first year of
implementation. Materials and messages for outreach will also be built into other activities of the project
as relevant, such as the impact surveys on known GII-infested islands conducted under Output 3.5.
Support for developing the outreach plan will be supported by the GEF project. Ultimately awareness
activities would be long-term and extend well beyond the life of the GEF project. The support of resort
owners on islands will also be engaged, including to align the messages of any awareness activities run by
resorts for their staff and guests, and to use these activities in broader support of this Output.
Second, newly recruited project staff (Team on Taveuni) will survey likely GII nesting areas during the
months of August to December. These areas include all sandy beaches, landslides, gardens, golf courses,
and road-cuts with sun exposure and soil loose enough for GII to dig nests. Surveys will include dog teams
trained to locate GII and their eggs. GII are at their most vulnerable when on the ground searching for
nesting sites, and this activity will take advantage of this vulnerability (refer to Annex 6 for more details).
All potential nesting sites will be located and mapped in the first months of the project. In the non-nesting
months, the project staff will focus on general outreach within the four islands to build public support for
prevention and management of IAS as discussed in Output 4.1.
Given the size of Taveuni, if GII prove to be extensively established on that island, eradicating the species
from Fiji will prove incredibly challenging, and the management focus will need to shift to control and
containment of GII to the four infested islands through improved local biosecurity. If a single small but
restricted population were discovered on Taveuni, eradication of that population would have to become
the highest priority for further GII control. If no GII are discovered on Taveuni that would suggest that
populations remain confined to Qamea, Matagi, and Laucala, and eradication of GII from those islands
would continue vigorously.
Indicative GEF-financed activities for Output 3.1 include:
Development of a comprehensive public outreach program in Taveuni and the surrounding islets
(Qamea, Matagi and Laucala) built upon the message “IAS and biosecurity is everyone’s
Training of staff assigned by BAF to implement the outreach program in Taveuni and surrounding
Implementation of outreach strategy through Taveuni and three islets that reaches all segments
of the population.
Intensified survey of potential GII nesting sites on Taveuni to establish GII status on the island,
followed by eradication depending on survey findings.
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Output 3.2 A detailed eradication plan developed and implemented simultaneously on Qamea, Matagi and Laucala
The project will devise a detailed eradication plan for the islands of Qamea, Matagi, and Laucala. This plan
will be implemented simultaneously with the comprehensive survey and public outreach effort on Taveuni
so that eradication can commence on islands known to be infested while surveys on Taveuni take place.
The eradication plan will address both strategic and tactical aspects of the eradication (refer to Annex 6
for further details) and clearly lay out the methods to be used for finding and removing GII, methods that
need to be newly incorporated into the eradication program and evaluated for effectiveness, and
methods requiring further research to determine their potential efficacy. The plan will also detail staffing
and training requirements for the program and identify means to track project success in meeting the goal
of eradication without violating the regional and international animal welfare mandates that the
Government of Fiji is signatory to. Finally, the plan will identify major risks to achieving eradication and
discuss how these barriers may be surmounted. The plan would also be assessed for any social and
environmental risks, including impacts on native species and measures for addressing such impacts would
be incorporated into the plan. The plan will be grounded in recommending approaches that are feasible
given the logistical and timing constraints operating in Fiji.
Indicative list of GEF-funded activities for Output 3.2 include:
Development and implementation of strategic and tactical GII eradication plan for Qamea,
Matagi and Laucala.
Assessment of potential environmental and social impacts of eradication plan prior to
implementation of eradication activities and the identification and deployment of appropriate
mitigation measures for these risks.
Output 3.3 Reduction of GII sightings/captures on Qamea, Matagi and Laucala by 50% or more
Successful GII eradication will require many years, extending well beyond the four years of the present
project. This is because, as for all eradications, removing the last animals occurring at low population
densities will be more difficult than removing animals early in the eradication program. Nonetheless,
achieving rapid reduction of GII populations will be imperative both in attaining the overall goal of total
eradication but also in protecting other islands from the threat of dispersing GII seeking better quality
habitats. Thus, this project will aim for the goal of achieving at least a 50% reduction of the populations
on Qamea, Matagi, and Laucala by the end of the project. Accurately measuring this goal will require
establishing a credible baseline rate of removal (in the first or second year as sufficiently trained staff
become available) and efficacy testing of the control methods employed. Both of these will require that
sufficient staff are trained and deployed around these three islands by the second year of the project.
Thus, BAF will increase staffing in its first year to 50 persons on these islands (inclusive of the team on
Taveuni) and maintain that number for at least the duration of this project. GEF will finance incremental
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costs associated with technical support and coordination, dog team training, capacity building and
training, outreach, and specialized tools, techniques and approaches to eradication.
Indicative list of GEF-funded activities for Output 3.3 include:
Technical support and oversight of the GII eradication effort.
Staff training in methods of eradication of GII on Qamea, Matagi and Laucala.
Improved tools and methods of GII eradication instituted.
Complementing the GEF activities, the Government of Fiji will co-finance costs of eradication teams, office
space and operational costs for GII eradication, and provide a long-term commitment to additional
funding and staffing to sustain the eradication effort beyond the timeline of the GEF project.
Output 3.4 Survey of native banded iguana on island(s) where GII are known to be established Surveys for native banded iguana (Brachylophus bulabula)
will be conducted in Year 1 and Year 4 to track
native iguana population status during the course of the project. Native iguana population densities prior
to GII establishment are unknown. But, surveys conducted in Year 1 of the project will provide a baseline
to which future surveys can be compared to determine if there are any changes to native iguana
population size and distribution as GII populations are eradicated. Surveys may be spread over a single
island or multiple islands and will include a variety of habitats known to be occupied by native iguana
and/or GII. Surveys will include multiple survey sites to provide a representative sample. Survey
methodology will be explicit and the same methodology and sampling sites will be utilized for survey work
in both Years 1 and 5. Survey methodology will be based on currently acceptable methods that have been
utilized successfully for similar species elsewhere. Results of the survey work will be expected to support
the GII eradication/management program by identifying areas of native iguana density that could be
potentially impacted by high levels of GII invasion and therefore prioritized for eradication.
Output 3.5 Survey and assessment to determine local community perceptions of damage and impacts of GII on food crops and livelihoods GII has been established in Fiji for several years. It is known to be present on the islands of Qamea, Laucala
and Matagi and may or may not have established on Taveuni. Despite the presence of GII, little evidence
of impacts on livelihoods and food crops have been observed to date. Experience from elsewhere suggests
that impacts do not become apparent until GII populations reach very high densities. To understand how
GII impact on and interact with local livelihoods, a survey of local community perceptions will be
conducted to determine the current status of any impacts on food crops and livelihoods associated with
the presence of GII on islands where GII is established. Survey and assessment work should be conducted
on Qamea, Matagi and Laucala to support better understanding of any current impacts, if any, as well as
to determine what future potential impacts could arise if GII populations in Fiji were not effectively
controlled. The survey and assessment of community perceptions will be undertaken in Year 1 and re-
assessed in Year 5 of the project to ascertain if there is any change in perceptions of impact. While the
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primary purpose of these surveys is to collect data on GII impacts and measure any change in perceptions
of impacts over time, they also offer potential awareness-raising opportunities. Given this potential,
impact surveys will also be used to disseminate information on this project including outreach materials
and messages developed under Outputs 3.1 and 4.1 as relevant.
If the study indicates perceptions of damage by GII, then the project would estimate the costs of current
damage by determining the range of garden crops destroyed by GII and the cost to replace these
subsistence crops with market crops should all be lost due to GII consumption. Alternative measures will
also investigate the costs of fencing all garden crops from GII predation and the time needed to deter
iguanas from climbing those fences. Additionally, as part of the economic study planned under Output
1.4, the project will support an economic assessment of the potential impacts of IAS (including GII) on
agricultural and forestry crops, livelihoods, and biodiversity including cost/benefits analysis of prevention
measures currently utilized to build national and local support and understanding for strengthened
biosecurity controls and investment.
Outcome 4: Increased awareness of risks posed by IAS and need for biosecurity of local communities, travelling public, tour operators and shipping to invasive alien species and biosecurity (Total Cost: USD
4,065,544,GEF: USD 403,000 (including M&E): Co-financing: 3,664,544)
Achievement of Outcome 4 is supported through the following outputs:
Strengthened awareness of IAS issues among public developed nationally, following initial
trialing in Taveuni, Qamea, Matagi and Laucala.
Development of national on-line clearinghouse for information on IAS.
Improved national IAS database.
Baseline conditions for this outcome (without GEF project): There is no comprehensive IAS information at the national level, without which prevention, management
and awareness of IAS in Fiji will remain under-capacitated because existing knowledge and information
are not readily accessible to all stakeholders. IAS and biosecurity outreach efforts will remain as they are
currently are (limited) with no coordinated programmatic approach. Public engagement with supporting
biosecurity efforts will remain low.
Alternative for this outcome (with GEF project): Safeguarding the nation from IAS will be greatly improved through established public and visitor
awareness, outreach and buy-in in regards to IAS prevention and management. Recognition that IAS
impacts everyone at all levels will ensure that prevention and management efforts receive public and
government support, and that all stakeholders recognize and adhere to their personal biosecurity
responsibilities, ensuring their continuance and maximizing their effectiveness. This will be accomplished
through awareness campaigns, creation and maintenance of an online public access IAS clearing-house
and a national IAS database.
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Output 4.1 Strengthened biosecurity outreach activities developed nationally, following initial trialing in on Taveuni, Qamea, Matagi and Laucala among communities, private landholders and other sectors
Following successful trialing of the four-island outreach (Output 3.1), it would be extended nationally to
create broad awareness of and responsibility for IAS management, and support for measures that prevent
IAS entry into and within the country. An international consultant will facilitate and lead efforts to develop
a national outreach strategy and plan, identifying target audiences, target messages and means of
outreach, school curriculum changes, and other suitable means. The outreach program will target a broad
range of stakeholders including tour operators, shipping agents and the travelling public and be built upon
the message “IAS and biosecurity is everyone’s responsibility”. The GEF project would support the
development of publicity materials for the national outreach program. A coordinator for the national
outreach would be delegated from either BAF or a partner institution or hired through the project to
oversee its implementation during and beyond the life of the project, so that this effort is sustained on a
Indicative list of GEF-funded activities under Output 4.1 include:
National outreach strategy and plan developed and implemented using a variety of materials,
media and outreach tools.
Output 4.2 Improved collation and use of IAS information nationally through establishment of national IAS database and national online clearing-house on IAS
Once the Fiji IAS desktop exercise (Output 1.2) has been completed, this information will be utilized to
populate an online IAS clearing-house of IAS information for Fiji. It is worth noting that a Fiji IAS clearing-
house website is currently available but content is limited. These efforts will be conducted in concert with
the group that has established the current draft IAS clearing-house website and with the consultant hired
to conduct the desktop exercises so that end results can readily be input into the clearing-house. Once
established, the clearing-house would be maintained and updated regularly.
The clearing-house would also need to be advertised so that those involved in IAS work both in Fiji and
regionally can use its content and contribute to its improvement. The clearing-house would also be
accessible to the general public as it can be used as an extensive informational source to improve IAS
awareness both within Fiji and beyond. The clearing-house would be linked to other key websites such as
those for BAF and the Ministry of the Environment. The clearing-house, once populated, would also be
announced regionally via existing IAS networks. Establishing, populating and updating a Fiji IAS clearing-
house will facilitate management of existing IAS both in Fiji and regionally.
A national IAS database will be developed based on the four-island group IAS database (Output 2.1). Under
Output 4.2 the four-island database will be broadened in geographic scope to cover the entire country in
the second half of the project – the four-island database becoming one of numerous portals to the
national database. The national database will support IAS prevention and management across multiple
sectors to allow both managers and policy makers to better understand IAS and improve development
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and implementation of regulations, policy and field actions throughout the country. The database will
serve end users across the spectrum, including scientists, biosecurity officers, natural resource managers,
policy makers and the general public. To facilitate this broad use it is expected that the database will be
based on a ‘portal’ access point, which can be accessed via most web browsers. The national database is
envisioned as a multi-stakeholder database where details and information on IAS are housed and where
stakeholders can access data for analysis to improve IAS management at island, division and national
levels. Different access levels to the database will be specified, with access to some information restricted
to specific agencies, other areas open to multiple agencies and still others accessible to the general public.
The national database will be built through a 2-stage process as follows:
Develop database for four-island region (Output 2.1) to confirm technologies, data standards
and entry formats, and user access arrangements
Adjust database format, data standards and access as required based on learning from four-
island databse, and broaden coverage to national IAS database (Output 4.2).
How existing information held by numerous agencies, Ministries and NGOs can be best integrated, further
populated, and structurally updated will need to be determined. Data storage and maintenance would be
the national level, but island or island group elements of the database will become operational as these
portals come online. As per Fijian law, BAF is mandated to oversee IAS and collaborates with many
government and non-government stakeholders in doing so, including university. The database, and a
majority of the data, is expected to be stored and housed within BAF, in alignment with BAF’s overall
responsibility for IAS. It is expected that oversight for database maintenance will be provided by the
national level coordination body. Operating procedures and guidelines for database access, data sharing
arrangements, and housing and maintenance (taking on feedback from Output 2.1) will be drafted and
managed by the national agency BAF. The sustainability of database management will be an important
consideration of determining these arrangements, along with national legislation, agency mandates, the
needs of Fiji and the capacity of different partners. Database maintenance arrangements will be
confirmed during the first year of implementation.
Indicative list of GEF-funded activities under Output 4.2 include:
Development and population of IAS clearing-house for the country.
Linking of IAS clearing-house to other agency websites.
Outreach to inform general public of IAS clearing-house.
National multi-level IAS database designed and populated.
Procedures and guidelines for accessing database, data storage and sharing, and database
maintenance, developed and instituted for management by BAF under relevant national
Output 4.3. IAS best practices and project lessons learned are synthesized and shared among stakeholders
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Output 4.3 addresses the publication and dissemination of knowledge products, best practices and
lessons learned. The project will also help establish a community of practice on comprehensive IAS
management in Fiji, including to identify and share lessons learned from the on-ground eradication of GII.
An outline of how the community of practice will connect multiple IAS stakeholders to promote learning
and sharing of best practices is shown in Annex 7.
The project will publish at least five best practice and case study reports systematizing project
experiences, best practices and lessons learned, in electronic formats that will be shared through mailing
lists, partner’s websites and social media, and through integration into stakeholder forums and training
sessions as relevant. These reports will approach different themes provisionally scoped as: i) NISFSAP as
a mechanism for cross-sectorial, multi-stakeholder engagement; ii) international best practices in IAS
prevention, quarantine, surveillance and rapid response, and relevance for Fiji; iii) GII eradication best
practices from the four island case study; iv) impacts and interaction of IAS with livelihoods in Fiji, including
any gender-related differences in perceptions of impacts; v) project lessons learned. Publications will
include information on the methodologies applied, the difficulties encountered, as well as the projects
successes and on-ground impacts. All project knowledge products will be shared with the multi-
stakeholder dialogue platforms, nationally, regionally and globally to be established with project support,
thereby reaching an important number of institutions in each sector at global, national and local level.
This will help ensure access of the wider stakeholder community to the experiences, failures and successes
of the project.
Indicative list of GEF-funded activities under Output 4.3 include:
Building a community of practice of relevant stakeholders around IAS management, including to
bring together the lessons learned through the project.
Identifying and documenting lessons learned and best practices in preventing, controlling and
Dissemination of lessons learned through online fora and integration into stakeholder forums,
training events and outreach program.
Participation in regional and global events to help facilitate sharing of lessons learned and
experiences in biosecurity and IAS control and management by BAF.
The proposed project will coordinate with a range of on-going GEF-financed projects in the country and
Pacific region described below.
The project will work with other emerging GEF-financed IAS projects in the Pacific region to foster South-
South cooperation through identification of opportunities for collaboration and exchange and scaling-up
of lessons learned. The UNDP-supported GEF-financed project Implementing a “Ridge to Reef” approach to Preserve Ecosystem Services, Sequester Carbon, Improve Climate Resilience and Sustain Livelihoods in Fiji seeks to improve management effectiveness of existing and new protected areas and enhance their
financial sustainability, restore carbon stocks in priority catchments, and demonstrate sustainable forest
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management and integrated management for biodiversity, forests, land and water. Prevention and
management of IAS is a key issue for protected areas. The UNDP-supported GEF-financed Capacity Building For Mainstreaming MEA Objectives Into Inter-Ministerial Structures And Mechanisms (2014-
2017) aims to strengthen capacities of individuals and institutions involved in environmental management
in Fiji to coordinate better, make better decisions addressing global environmental issues and mainstream
global environmental issues into national legislation, policies, plans and programs. This will help Fiji to
improve its compliance with various related MEAs, particularly the three Rio Conventions. Lessons learned
through this MEA project will be useful in the design and implementation of this IAS investment proposal.
Related projects in Fiji will be invited to participate in the inter-sectoral, multi-stakeholder coordination
mechanism established through this IAS investment. The proposed UNDP-supported GEF-financed project
Integration of Biodiversity Safeguards and Conservation into Development in Palau (currently in PPG
phase), seeks to develop a national framework for IAS management, pathway and risk analysis for key IAS
species, develop a national action plan for IAS and prepare an EDRR, all of which are relevant to the Fiji
project. UNDP is also developing a GEF-6 project proposal for the Federated States of Micronesia that is
expected to have a focus on IAS. Finally, there is the proposed GEF-financed, UNEP-supported (in
collaboration with SPREP and national government partners) regional project Strengthening national and regional capacities to reduce the impact of Invasive Alien Species on globally significant biodiversity in the Pacific that will operate in the Republic of Marshall Islands, Niue, Tonga and Tuvalu.
Regular meetings will be held between the different projects to leverage synergies and ensure efficiency
in implementing the projects. The studies conducted and the information gathered under the other
projects will be integrated into project development and implementation. In addition, efforts would be
made, to the extent feasible, to share information on training programs, that could collectively ensure
participation across the projects. This project will coordinate with and share best practices and lessons
learned with the UNEP-supported regional IAS project working in four Pacific nations and developing
important knowledge products, technical support and systems for adaptive learning in IAS management
in the Pacific. This collaboration is further detailed in Part iv) South-south and Triangular Cooperation.
Additionally, efforts would be made to share information with the GEF-financed UNEP-supported
Preventing costs for IAS project in the Caribbean that seeks to undertake pathway analysis and risk
assessment for IAS.
This project will contribute significantly to improving communication and promoting collaboration within
and between different government agencies involved in biosecurity and biodiversity protection. While
BAF is the lead Implementing Partner, it will improve collaboration with the Department of Environment,
Fiji Revenue and Customs Authority (FRCA), and Airports Fiji Limited through the project’s main focus on
improving biosecurity in the country. Horizontal linkages and collaboration will therefore be strengthened
between these central government institutions and other entities that seek to ensure the protection of
native species and ecosystems that might be impacted by the entry and establishment of IAS. Stronger
linkages and collaboration will also be promoted between central and local government structures and
institutions, in particular with regional and district administrations in the four-islands group, as well as
NGOs, the latter to share lessons and best practices and expand the constituencies for IAS protection and
management. These partnerships will be strengthened through a number of institutional mechanisms
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envisaged under the project, including the establishment of a national multi-stakeholder, multi-sector IAS
committee and the reconstitution of FIST. It will also support collaboration at the four-island site by
formation of FIIT. The role of the Project Board and the Project Implementation Unit will further ensure
that partnerships work and interactions are kept functional. UNDP, with its oversight role, and as a
development partner with the Government of Fiji, will play a central role in ensuring that these
partnerships work, and it will liaise at the highest level with government to ensure that the project delivers
the development results as agreed between the GEF, UNDP and the government.
The project will also connect to other efforts in Fiji that have an IAS component and/or a need to consider
IAS matters. These include the Pacific Adaptation to Climate Change (PACC) Programme of SPREP which
has a primary objective of developing crop resilience/food security within Fiji – facilitating this work will
require prevention of IAS incursions and managing a variety of existing IAS that impact crops. This project
will also coordinate with other efforts to improve conservation of significant biodiversity on Taveuni, such
as BirdLife’s project to improve the protection of the Fiji Petrel that is thought to roost in the high lands
of Taveuni. As nesting locations are better defined, IAS prevention and management tactics can and will
support efforts to insure this species and its nesting environments receive the best possible protection
from IAS. Coordination efforts will help ensure that any IAS actions implemented by SPREP and Birdlife
under these initiatives are aligned to the outcomes of this project, and conducted in consultation with
BAF, NEC and other stakeholders.
The project included a wide range of consultations during the PPG stage. Initial stakeholder analysis during
the PIF stage was followed up with consultation during the PPG stage in terms of the design and
expectation of the project. During the PPG stage, this stakeholder analysis was updated and elaborated
following consultations undertaken by the consultant team addressing both institutional stakeholders in
the context of their statutory involvement in the project, and more broadly for non-governmental
stakeholders and local communities in the four islands. A stakeholder validation workshop was held in
August 2016 in Suva to obtain the perspectives of the different stakeholders to the proposed strategy to
address IAS issues in Fiji, and to the eradication of GII from the four-island group, as well as to discuss
project design, outcomes and outputs, and opportunities for collaboration. The stakeholder workshop
was attended by many government agencies including Forestry and Fisheries, Environment, Public
Enterprise, Defense and Police, Revenue and Customs, along with the Fiji National University, University
of South Pacific, and CSOs. Additionally, a formal stakeholder analysis was undertaken by the PPG team
and documented as part of the project. A list of the agencies, organizations and stakeholders consulted
during project development is included as Annex 8.
The purpose of the Stakeholder Involvement Plan (SIP) is to ensure the long-term and effective
participation of stakeholders in the project. These objectives will be achieved by: (i) identifying the main
stakeholders of the project and defining their roles and responsibilities in relation to the project; and (ii)
taking advantage of the experience and skills of the main stakeholders so as to safeguard their active
participation in different activities of the project and reduce obstacles in its implementation and
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sustainability after completion of the project. The approach is based on the principles of ensuring fairness
and transparency, improving consultation, engagement and empowerment, improving coordination
between stakeholders, improving access to information and project results; and ensuring accountability,
addressing grievances and ensuring sustainability of project interventions after its completion.
BAF will be instrumental in establishing coordinative and collaborative links with key government and
non-government partners and other stakeholders during the implementation of the project. To the extent
necessary, BAF will collaborate with the Taveuni and Government District Committees to promote
outreach and galvanize broad local and community support for eradication of the GII from Taveuni and