Climate change communication and education

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1. Context

2. Climate change education and training in the country

3. Climate change communication in the country

4. Monitoring and evaluation


  1. Context

i. Climate change context

With an area of 27,750 km² and a population of approximately 11.2 million, Haiti is one of the most densely populated countries in the region. Located on the border of two tectonic plates (the North American Plate and the Caribbean Plate, located under the Caribbean Sea), Haiti is not only located on the direct trajectory of extreme weather events such as storms and hurricanes but is also the site of strong seismic activity that seriously damages its socio-economic development. Haiti is the most vulnerable country in Latin America and the Caribbean to climate change. Rising temperatures and declining rainfall have intensified drought, contributing to the food insecurity that affects 4.9 million Haitians, almost half the population. According to the World Bank, the major natural hazards that threaten Haiti are cyclones, tsunamis, earthquakes, volcanic eruptions, floods, droughts, and landslides, with floods as the greatest threat and contributor to vulnerability. The country’s most populated cities are all nestled in the valleys along the coast, nearby flood plains, and in areas with steep slopes susceptible to landslides. Widespread deforestation in the upper reaches of these valleys, coupled with a shortage of drainage infrastructure, creates an environment conducive to flooding. The most vulnerable sector to climate change is agriculture as Haiti’s economy is based primarily on agriculture, which employs 66% of the work force and contributes 27% of the gross national product.

Sitting in the centre of the ‘hurricane belt,’ Haiti experienced six major storms in the 30 years before the time of this review, including Hurricane Jeanne, which killed thousands in Gonaives in 2004. More recently, Hurricane Matthew devastated the southwestern part of the country in 2016, leaving 1.5 million persons in need of humanitarian relief.

The Carbon Atlas has indicated that Haiti’s emissions were around 0.3 tCO2 per person in 2021. According to the fact sheet Greenhouse Gas Emissions in Haiti (2011), agriculture was the leading source of greenhouse gas emissions in Haiti, contributing 49% of total emissions, followed by the energy sector at 39%, the waste sector at 7%, industrial processes at 4%, and land-use change and forestry at 2%.

Haiti signed the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change in 1992, ratifying it in 1996, and accepted the Kyoto Protocol in 2005 as a Non-Annex I country. It signed the Paris Agreement in April 2016 and ratified it in 2017.

ii. Relevant government agencies 

Climate change

The Haitian government created the Ministry of Environment in 1994 with the aim of promoting sustainable development while simultaneously fostering environmental conservation. The Ministry has a broad mandate, among other tasks, 1) to formulate and implement national and sectoral policies in the field of the environment; 2) develop, implement, and enforce environmental standards, laws, and regulatory measures that facilitate the protection and rehabilitation of the environment, with a focus on sustainable development; and 3) enhance the resilience of socio-ecological systems and natural landscapes. The Ministry, which oversees a number of projects and activities related to climate change and environment, is considered the National Designated Authority or the Focal Point for Action for Climate Empowerment; typically responsible for coordinating and managing climate finance and climate-related projects at the national level.

The Ministry has several directorates and departments including the Directorate of Climate Change, which has among its responsibilities 1) producing decision-support tools that facilitate planning for climate change adaptation and mitigation; 2) periodically providing a national inventory of anthropogenic greenhouse gas emissions and absorptions for the country; 3) enhancing local capacities in climate adaptation and climate risk reduction through awareness, education, and training; and 4) facilitating, in collaboration with universities and relevant research centres, the generation of knowledge regarding the most appropriate adaptation and mitigation techniques within the country’s context.

The National Committee on Climate Change is an inter-institutional and intersectoral body with the objective of ensuring the coordination, monitoring, and evaluation of national policies, programs, and action plans related to climate change. The Committee serves as the operational arm for the Directorate of Climate Change of the Ministry of Environment, where issues related to the design, development, evaluation, and monitoring of actions to combat the adverse effects of climate change are reasoned, discussed, and resolved. The Committee is composed of representatives from sectoral ministries, local authorities, civil society, the private sector, and universities. The Committee had its first meeting in 2022 to launch the National Cllimante Change Adaptation Plan; 2022-2030.

The Ministry of Agriculture, Natural Resources, and Rural Development is the government entity responsible for defining the economic policy of the Haitian government in the areas of agriculture, livestock, renewable natural resources, and rural development. It also coordinates the interventions of the different actors involved and ensures a minimum of basic agriculture public services, especially in agriculture research and extension, sanitary protection, training, and information. Within the Ministry are various specialized services, such as the National Meteorology and Hydrology Service, the National Water Resources Service, and the National Meteorology Service. Collectively, these services take on technical advisory roles.

The Ministry of Planning and External Cooperation oversees national plans for economic and social development and enhances their planning system to allow optimum use of available funds for balanced economic and social development.

The Ministry of Public Works, Transport and Communication is the legislative and regulatory body of the Haitian government responsible for 1) public works, 2) transportation, 3) communication, 4) drinking water, and 5) energy. The Ministry is primarily responsible for 1) managing public physical infrastructure, including urban and rural facilities and as potable-water supply systems; 2) establishing urban planning regulations and technical construction standards; and 3) regulating delivery of services provided by private and public entities. An important objective is the modernization of solid waste management. To this end, the Ministry has worked on 1) improving and enhancing waste collection in the Port-au-Prince metropolitan region; 2) enhancing non-recyclable waste disposal; 3) implementating a fundraising strategy for solid waste management; 4) conducting studies on the development of a national strategic plan for waste management; 5) establishing a communication program for information, awareness, and education about sustainable solid waste management; and 6) development of a medium-term strategy for reducing the volume of collected waste.

The Ministry of the Interior and Territorial Communities is the central body tasked with designing, defining, and implementing the policy of the executive branch for territorial communities, immigration and emigration, and civil protection. Among the projects that the Ministry has overseen was the Risk Management and Resilience to Climate Hazards Project (2019) financed by the World Bank. The objective of this Project was to contribute to the reduction of the number of victims of climate-related disasters, which regularly impact Haiti, by strengthening national capacities for disaster preparedness, response, and resilience.

The Alliance for Risk Management and Business Continuity was established in 2008 following a Pan American Development Foundation competition to encourage the private business sector in Haiti to support the National Disaster Risk Management Plan: 2019-2030 (2019). The Alliance initially operated under the auspices of the American Chamber of Commerce and the Association of Industries of Haiti and has since evolved independently. The Alliance serves as the focal point for the private business sector and civil society within the National Disaster Risk Management System, which is coordinated by the Directorate of Civil Protection. The Directorate supports the Risk Management System by encouraging public-private partnerships to share expertise in the field of disaster risk management for businesses. The Alliance runs a number of projects related to climate hazards.

The Ministry of Economy and Finance, in its Strategic Vision 2017-2022, mentions smart and proactive risk management. It states that natural disasters have significantly impacted Haiti’s development path. In recent decades, Haiti has been the Caribbean country most affected by natural disasters, including 3 droughts, 1 epidemic, 22 floods, and 23 storms and hurricanes. Therefore, adapting to climate change is not an option but a necessity. The Ministry plays a vital role in implementing national policies and actions for climate change adaptation and vulnerability reduction by 1) developing natural-resource management tools; 2) promoting more climate-resilient and resource-efficient technologies; 3) mobilizing public and private climate financing; 4) creating a financial strategy for climate risk management; and 5) allocating budgetary resources to support climate actions.

The Ministry for the Status of Women and Women’s Rights is the central body responsible for defining, designing, and implementing state policies in the field of women’s status and women’s rights. The aim of these policies, which are fully aligned with the objectives pursued through cooperation with the European Union, defend and promote women’s rights through the revision of legal texts and by promoting public education that encourages non-sexist behaviours and attitudes.

Education and communication

The Ministry of National Education and Vocational Training oversees the country’s education system and develops and implements policies and programs that promote education at all levels, from primary school to higher education. The Ministry’s primary role is to ensure that all Haitian citizens have access to quality education. The Ministry is responsible for overseeing the country’s universities and other institutions of higher learning.

The National Fund for Education is an autonomous education funding body, under the supervision of the Ministry of National Education and Vocational Training. The Fund, which was created in 2017, invests in the future through environmental education.

The aims of the Directorate of Education, Inspection, and Environmental Monitoring of the Ministry of Environment are 1) to develop and ensure the implementation of the Ministry’s policy in the fields of information, education, training, and citizen and institutional empowerment for the protection and management of the environment; 2) coordinate the development and implementation of the national policy on environmental education; 3) participate in the implementation of priority programs for the environment, focusing on awareness and training needs and opportunities; 4) plan, coordinate, monitor, and evaluate, in collaboration with other relevant government or private ministries and entities, the integration of environmental education at training centres nationwide; and 5) develop cooperation and partnerships with universities and national or international organizations in the field of environmental education.

The Centre for Educational Leadership Training is a public institution in Haiti that provides leadership and professional training for the personnel of the Haitian education system, especially those in the public sector.

The Thematic Committee on Public Education and Awareness, established in 2006 and co-chaired by the Ministry of National Education and Vocational Training and the Directorate of Civil Protection, coordinates the interventions of public and private institutions in the field of disaster resilience awareness and education. These actions target individuals, focusing on citizen empowerment and on families and communities, including leaders and the media. They have significantly improved their knowledge of risks, including vulnerabilities, and their capacity to proactively anticipate the effects of risk phenomena, respond in emergency or disaster situations, and recover from such dangerous events.

Founded  in 1992, the Foundation for the Protection of Marine Biodiversity, or FoProBiM, an apolitical non-governmental and non-profit organization headquartered in Haiti, was officially recognized by the Haitian government in 1995 as a foundation working on environmental issues in the areas of sustainable development, education, research, monitoring, and advocacy. As one of Haiti’s oldest environmental organizations, and one of the very few with a full-time, dedicated staff, FoProBiM’s mission includes 1) raising awareness concerning needed changes in regulations and attitudes; 2) increasing knowledge and capabilities at the government, community and individual levels in order to make sustainable improvements in the environment and the lives of people; and 3) conducting educational programs as well as scientific research, including environmental monitoring, in order to promote improved management of the environment and the protection of biodiversity through a better understanding of the need to sustainably use environmental resources.

Haiti Survie, founded in 1993, is an environmental organization based in Haiti that works closely with rural groups and popular organizations all over the country. Their principal areas of activities are in the South, South-East and North-East (near the border with the Dominican Republic). At the time of this review, their main national campaign focused on desertification and reforestation, sustainable agriculture, climate change, and other issues including: erosion and soil degradation, waste management, and awareness campaigns. The organization joined Friends of the Earth International in 1996.

Locally Haiti is a Colorado-based non-profit organization that has a partner community in Petit Trou de Nippes in rural Haiti. Locally Haiti’s integrated initiatives are designed to support economic development and the overall health and well-being of families through education, agriculture and conservation, community health, and girls’ empowerment. Initiatives related to climate change have been rare, but the agricultural education program at St. Paul’s School had tripled the size of the farm by building a cement wall on the outer perimeter and internal fencing throughout the garden by 2022. The participating students and team had planted 450 tomato plants and 450 pepper plants, this in addition to gardens of lettuce, carrots, spinach, sesame, and okra.

ADEMA is a local non-profit organization established in Haiti in 2005. Free of political and religious affiliations, ADEMA works to contribute to the development of the lower northwest region of Haiti by supporting local communities, decentralized state services, and civil-society organizations. To improve people’s access to basic services, ADEMA primarily intervenes in the fields of education, local development, food security, and water and sanitation.

iii. Relevant laws, policies, and plans 

Climate change

The Constitution of Haiti was ratified in 1987, suspended from June 1988 to March 1989, and fully reinstated in 1994. Article 253 of the Constitution states that, since the environment is the natural framework for the life of the people, any practices that might disturb the ecological balance are strictly forbidden.

The Presidential Decree on Environmental Management, issued in 2006, defined the roles and responsibilities of various stakeholders in environmental management in Haiti. Furthermore, the Decree acknowledged that the degradation of the Haitian environment had reached alarming proportions, jeopardizing the sustainable development of the country. It was imperative for the state to take appropriate measures for the safeguarding and protection of the environment. For this reason, it was the duty of the state to promote ecological education by enabling better access to relevant information for citizens so that they can participate in and be mindful of decisions that have an impact on the environment and on sustainable development. The Decree states that good environmental governance, with the integration and participation of the state, local communities, and civil society, is an important instrument in the fight against the degradation of the living environment, poverty, and destitution.

The Strategic Development Plan of Haiti (2012), developed by the Ministry of Planning and External Cooperation, offers development directions and strategies, outlining the major projects for recovery and development as proposed in the Action Plan for National Recovery and Development of Haiti (2010), with the aim of transforming Haiti into an emerging country by 2030. The Strategic Development Plan mentions that the rainy and cyclonic season poses a significant challenge for the country, as the entire territory is exposed to severe climate risks and acute infrastructure constraints. Urgent interventions are required in various locations each year to reduce the vulnerability of populations and territories in high-risk areas. These interventions include sensitizing and educating the population and businesses about environmental matters.

The National Policy to Combat Climate Change (2019), developed by the Ministry of Environment, provides strategic guidance and vision for Haiti’s response to climate change. The Policy is based on four major pillars: institutional strengthening, improvement of governance, domestic climate financing, and effective climate change mitigation. These pillars are accompanied by a set of cross-cutting and sectoral measures designed to facilitate the realization of the vision and objectives. The Plan calls for the implementation of a university research and training program and the establishment of a plan for public and parliamentary education on climate change.

The National Climate Change Adaptation Plan: 2022-2030 (2022) responds to the necessity for the Republic of Haiti to identify medium and long-term adaptation needs and to implement public strategies and policies to address the impacts of climate change. The Plan consists of 340 adaptation actions at the national level, including 21 actions considered high priorities. These actions mainly focus on climate-smart agriculture, irrigation infrastructure, integrated water resource management, reforestation and agroforestry, watershed management, capacity building, and disease prevention.

The National Disaster Risk Management Plan: 2019-2030 (2019) prioritizes a participatory, inclusive approach and an integrated and holistic strategy. The Plan is divided into four strategic axes that align with the Sendai Framework’s priority areas: 1) improving knowledge of disaster risks, 2) strengthening disaster risk governance, (3) developing and using financial mechanisms to build resilience in communities, public and private structures, and 4) enhancing preparedness for effective response and rapid recovery after a disaster.

The Haiti Sustainable Development Framework (2017) supported Haiti in its goals of achieving the status of an emerging country by 2030 and reaching the Sustainable Development Goals because it aligned with the national priorities of Haiti’s 2012-2030 Strategic Development Plan (2012). The Framework was the first signed between Haiti and the United Nations since 2008. According to the Framework, the country should design measures aimed at enhancing the resilience of populations and territories to climate change and natural disasters.

The aim of the Development and Capacity Building Plan (2021) for climate change adaptation, developed by Caribbean development advisers, was to identify and develop actions that would enhance national capacities, the resources that must to be mobilized, and the key performance indicators to prioritize in the monitoring and evaluation of the actions. The Plan covers themes such as training and research, systematic observation, mass education on adaptation, information about adaptation, and governance. The diverse nature of the themes necessitates multiple time horizons, over the short, medium, and long term.

The Second National Communication on Climate Change (2013), developed by the Ministry of Environment, provided relevant information for decision-making about the evolution of greenhouse gas emissions at the national level, mitigation measures, the country’s vulnerability to extreme climate events, and adaptation options.

The Haiti Nationally Determined Contribution (2021), developed by the Ministry of Environment, is a planning tool and a commitment document that could significantly contributing to the collective challenge of combatting climate change. The Nationally Determined Contribution proposed an ambitious national goal for a cumulative reduction of over 31% of greenhouse gas emissions, spread across the waste, electricity, services, agriculture, forestry, and land-use sectors. Additionally, the country’s resilience was to be strengthened through adaptation measures related to agriculture, livestock, fisheries, water resources, road infrastructure, coastal areas, and health.

Education and communication

The National Action Strategy on Education for All (2007), developed by the Ministry of National Education and Vocational Training, comprised three main chapters: 1) presentation of Haiti’s general context and the education sector, 2) diagnostic analysis of the education system with regard to access and coverage, internal efficiency and relevance, external efficiency, governance, and education financing, and 3) presentation of fundamental strategic choices and their related objectives. The strategic choices presented were 1) promoting greater equity in early childhood development and protection, 2) developing a policy for equity in access to both formal and non-formal basic education, 3) promoting a policy to improve the internal efficiency and relevance of the basic education system, 4) enhancing the external efficiency of the education system, and 5) promoting more effective and efficient management of the education sector. The Strategy made reference to the environmental context of Haiti, which is characterized by its vulnerability to natural hazards; however, climate change education was not mentioned.

The Decennial Education and Training Plan (2020), developed by the Ministry of National Education and Vocational Training, is a strategic document for realigning and guiding action in the education sector, by the year 2030. The Plan highlights the sectoral analysis of the Haitian education system from 2010 to 2019 to better understand the socio-educational reality of the country. The Plan addresses four major priorities, which are interconnected with the three priority program areas of governance, quality and relevance, access, and equity. However, the Plan does not mention climate change education or related issues, despite the description of the Haitian context and its vulnerability to climate change.

The National Policy for Non-Formal Education in Haiti (2019), developed by the Ministry of National Education and Vocational Training, is a strategic guidance tool that the Ministry provides to the stakeholders in the educational community and to partner institutions in education to assist them in achieving the goals of National Action Strategy on Education for All (2007). The Policy addresses the foundations of the non-formal education policy and its guiding principles, including the duty to educate and the principles of equity and equal opportunities, inclusion and synergy, citizen participation, subsidiarity, and centralization and decentralization. The Policy lists several essential national objectives, including improving the environment; but contains no other detail regarding climate change education.

The National School Food Policy and Strategy (2016), developed by the Ministry of National Education and Vocational Training, stated the vision for universal school feeding by 2030, justified by the need for children to be in good nutritional health so they can learn effectively at school. The Policy is oriented around three main strategic interventions: 1) providing quality food services in schools (snacks and hot meals) with the participation of the private and voluntary sectors, 2) supporting the local economy and the production of local food, and 3) developing the necessary national capacity for the effective management of school food services. The Policy emphasizes that school feeding is environmentally friendly and aligned with national policies. Necessary measures are to be taken to avoid or reduce potential environmental risks such as deforestation and air pollution, and special attention is to be given to the energy used for food preparation and food packaging.

The National Education Pact in Haiti (2010), a report to the president of Haiti, was a comprehensive and collaborative agreement or framework that involved the government, educational institutions, civil society, and other relevant parties in improving the state of education in the country. The Pact did not mention climate change education but did refer to environmental protection and respect and also to preventing deforestation and the resulting risks of natural disasters through mass education of the population.

The aim of the Communication Strategy for Haiti’s National Adaptation Plan Process (2021), developed by the Ministry of Environment, was to mobilize existing structures to guide the Haitian government in the short and medium term on how to 1) effectively use strategic communications to support its National Adaptation Plan, 2) communicate its priorities in adaptation and mitigation to its partners and relevant sectors, and ultimately 3)  encourage the Haitian population to change attitudes toward climate change. The Strategy calls for mobilizing the academic and research community to understand the impacts of adaptation measures on the country’s development.

iv. Terminology used for Climate Change Education and Communication

Most of Haiti’s documents refer to climate change communication and education as adaptation,’ ‘mitigation and resilience,’ ‘environmental protection,’ ‘climate financing,’ ‘awareness campaign,’ and ‘sustainability.” For example, the Presidential Decree on Environmental Management (2006) uses the term ‘sustainability,’ stating that “considering that the degradation of the Haitian environment has reached alarming proportions, jeopardizing the sustainable development of the country, it is imperative for the State to take appropriate measures for the safeguarding and protection of the environment” (p.3).

The Strategic Development Plan of Haiti (2012) mentions ‘sustainability’ and ‘sustainable development’ as an overall strategic objective, reporting that

 “The protection of the environment and its basic natural resources, namely air, water, and soil, as well as the protection of the health and safety of the population from the harmful effects of human activity, will rely on controlling practices contrary to sustainable development, including controlling emissions of pollutants into the environment, and improving knowledge about the natural environment.”

Strategic Development Plan of Haiti, 2012, p. 49.

The National Climate Change Adaptation Plan 2022-2030 refers to climate change in terms of ‘adaptation,’ saying that “Adapting to climate change is a time-consuming endeavour that requires considerable human and financial resources. These resources typically exceed the capacities of the Haitian government to meet the basic needs of its population” (p. 43).

The Second National Communication on Climate Change (2013) focused on ‘capacity building’ and ‘raising public awareness’ through the various local and national climate change projects and activities mentioned. For instance, the Communication highlighted the importance of “implementation of awareness campaigns on desertification, climate change mitigation, and establishment of necessary institutional arrangements” (p. 94).

The Haiti Nationally Determined Contribution (2021) also focused on

“strengthening the adaptive capacity and resilience of the population through watershed and soil conservation; coastal zone management; valorization and conservation of natural resources; preservation and enhancement of food security; protection and conservation of water; construction and rehabilitation of infrastructure; rational waste management; and the implementation of information, education, and awareness programs.”

Haiti Nationally Determined Contribution, 2021, p. 8

v. Budget for climate change education and communication

Government expenditures on education in Haiti were reported as 13.12% of total expenditures in 2022, according to the World Bank collection of development indicators. However, climate change education is not mentioned.

The Green Climate Fund has granted US$ 22.4 million in funding for a flood-management project targeting climate resilience in Haiti’s Trois-Rivières region. Supported by the United Nation Development Programme, the aim of the project was to reduce the risks associated with climate change–induced flooding through sustainable land management. More than 733,000 people were expected to benefit, while 25,440 hectares of degraded landscapes were to be restored through agroforestry and reforestation. 

The Ministry of Planning and External Cooperation, in collaboration with the Resident Coordinator Office of the United Nations system in Haiti, the United Nations Development Programme, and the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development officially launched the National Integrated Framework for Financing the Sustainable Development of Haiti in Port-au-Prince in 2021. A national consultation project on the 2030 Agenda, included in the Framework, aims to support the country in defining priorities for the mobilization of financing resources to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals. However, nothing related to climate change communication and education is mentioned.

According to the Finance Strategy of Climate Change Adaptation Options (n.d), adaptation opportunities for the period to 2030 are likely to place considerable emphasis on the agriculture and reforestation and the water resource management sectors. The cost of implementation of the priority actions for the 2021-2030 period would total US$ 991,065,060. However, no reference is made to climate change communication and education.

At the time of this review, the Francophonie Institute for Sustainable Development, a subsidiary of the International Organization of La Francophonie, was implementing a preparatory support project, funded by the Green Climate Fund, in partnership with the Ministry of Environment of Haiti. The aim of this project to strengthen the country’s capacities in mobilizing climate finance. According to the Finance Strategy of Climate Change Adaptation Options in Haiti (n.d.), accessing financing remains a challenge for implementing climate change adaptation actions in developing countries. As a small island developing state), Haiti is particularly vulnerable to the impacts of climate change and faces capacity constraints and specific circumstances.

  1. Climate change education and training in the country

i. Climate change in pre-primary, primary, and secondary education 

Haiti’s education system consists of primary schools, middle schools, and secondary schools, and all aremonitored by the Ministry of National Education and Vocational Training.

Article 150 of the Presidential Decree on Environmental Management (2006) stated that it is important to promote educational programs in schools and through the media on the importance and feasibility of recycling for the economy and the environment.

The Development and Capacity Building Plan for climate change adaptation (2021) called for a systematic integration of adaptation into school and university programs, creation of a Climate School label, creation of a climate prize for schoolchildren, implementation of Climate Week in primary and secondary schools, and revision of school and university curricula to systematically integrate the issue of adaptation to climate change.

Topics and themes related to climate change and the environment are included in the subject curricula. For example, the Grade 1 Science curriculum has a unit that deals with appreciating and discovering the importance of natural elements ( air, water, soil, and rocks) in the lives of human beings. Similarly, the Grade 4 Science looks more explicitly at water, and includes the topics of pollution, conservation, and natural disasters. The Grade 3 Social Sciences textbook describes the characteristics of the climate and vegetation in the region in terms of heat, cold, and drought. The Grade 6 Science curricula evaluates actions that negatively affect the environment and ways to remedy them. The textbook also defines energy and the different sources of energy (wind, water, and solar) and their properties. The Grade 7 Social Sciences textbook highlights the most significant features of the Haitian physical environment, the bio-geographical identity of Haiti, the overall physical factors and complexity of the Haitian ecological system, and the notion of climate and climatology. The Grade 9 Science textbook highlights the importance of understanding pollutants in order to combat pollution and environmental degradation, recognizing that population growth and overconsumption are the causes of environmental deterioration, and knowing the means of combatting pollution.

The aim of the UNESCO project on Implementing Measures for Climate Change Adaptation and Disaster Risk Reduction Mitigation of School Facilities in Haiti (2020) is to achieve three major objectives: 1) improve national knowledge of the exposure and physical vulnerability of school facilities and of the decision-making capacity for intervention in Haiti; 2) strengthen school safety by promoting rehabilitation, retrofitting, reconstruction, or relocation of selected schools and implementing school protocols for risk management; and 3) enhance the capacity and awareness of the local population and civil-protection stakeholders in risk management at national and local levels. These objectives were be achieved through three interlinked components. The project, among other things, mentions that science laboratories would be provided to students to transfer knowledge related to climate change and appropriate behaviours on how to adapt to the new climate challenges.

The Environmental Protection in the Caribbean, an independent non-profit organization founded in 2000, has the mission of protecting the Caribbean environment through research and community- based action. Two educators from the organization have visited the schools of Boukan Chat. They have taught a program in the schools, once a month, that focuses on a wide variety of environmental issues, including the water cycle, the role of soil, why plants are so important, how to recycle, and ways that wildlife and forests interact. These programs provide vital information about the way the Earth functions and the role that people play as part of the cycle of life.

The Ministry of the Environment, in order to sensitize the population in general and young people in particular on the environment and to popularize existing means of fighting against climate change, launched the Eco-Genius competition in 2022. The competition tested the knowledge and creativity of young Haitians in the South, South-East, Nippes, and Grand-Anse regions about basic environmental themes. The objectives of this initiative were to 1) educate the population on the impacts of climate change and the existing tools to reduce the vulnerability of the country’s ecosystems, 2) offer Haitian youth the opportunity to learn about the country’s environmental issues during the summer period, 3)  develop within the population a culture of civic responsibility toward the environment and climate change; and 4) allow young people from the targeted regions to compete on their knowledge of the environment in a fun atmosphere. The target groups were local organizations, youth associations, and civil-society organizations working in the field of environment and climate change.

A Child by the Hand (Un Enfant par la Main) founded in 1990, is an international solidarity association. Its mission is to enable disadvantaged children to become self-reliant and responsible adults through a pragmatic, comprehensive, and sustainable approach to development, focused on education. The association implemented the Raise Awareness among Teachers and their Students about Environmental Preservation project, in partnership with the Francophone Action Group for the Environment in Haiti, to raise awareness in five schools in the Chaîne des Matheux, involving 1710 students and 34 teachers, through several initiatives: 1) organization of a three-day training on the fundamentals of environmental education and the Action Group’s pedagogical tools; 2) creation of an environmental committee in each school; 3) an environmental assessment in each school focusing on green spaces, waste management, and civic engagement; 4) implementation of environmental activities (composting area, school garden, recycling, and visits to nurseries); and 5) organization of an interschool competition to showcase the actions taken by each school.

The Reforestation Grant Fund (a part of the USAID-funded Small Grants Facility implemented by the Organization of American States and Pan American Development Foundation) launched the Green Schools Initiative in 2018. By encouraging schools to adopt nature-based learning and by organizing visits to ecological parks, the Initiative hoped to empower youth ambassadors. For instance, a group of students, teachers, government officials, and environmental activists gathered at the ecological park of the Jardin Botanique des Cayes, 19-year-old poet François Miermond encouraged the audience through the power of his words to appreciate the fact that Trees are Life. Going on a nature walk through the ecological park, students learned about the immense ecological diversity that Haiti enjoys but also the reality that, unless they acted, this rich landscape would be lost to the next generation due to deforestation.

CESAL, a Spanish non-governmental organization, has been working for over 10 years in the school district of Ganthier, specifically in the municipality of Fonds-Verrettes, in the West region, near the border with the Dominican Republic. Its interventions focus on education, environment, food security, nutrition and livelihoods, gender equality, water, hygiene, sanitation, and capacity building for local authorities. The government of Navarre, during its 2020 call for projects, approved the program High-Quality Inclusive Education to Foster a Sustainable School Environment in Haiti, to be implemented by CESAL HAITI. The program was to contribute to sustainable development, the right to inclusive and quality basic education, and the improvement of the quality of life of the population through an environmental approach in schools by to providing training and raisiing awareness among educational communities in nine schools about the sustainable use of natural resources and the resilience of ecosystems: National School of Fonds-Verrettes, National School of Gros-Cheval, National School of Forêt-de-Pins, National School of Orianie, Mixed School of Gros-Cheval, Mixed School of Joseph Vicaire Jean-Gilles, Antoine Elie de Cannotte School, Mixed School La Colombe, and School La Sagesse d’Orianie.

The sponsorship component of ADEMA‘s education program, supported by the French Development Agency (Agence francaise de développement) and PARTAGE, assisted the children’s club (25 children) at the pilot school in Bombardopolis in organizing a clean-up day at a water source in Boucot. This water source serves approximately 5,000 residents of the town and one section of the Bombardopolis community. The clean-up involved removing all waste around the water source and raising awareness among the users present that day about always keeping the area in good condition for the community’s benefit. The school administration, along with teachers and some parents, supported the children in this endeavour. This action aligned with the vision of ADEMA’s education program to help schools nurture engaged citizens dedicated to their homeland, so that they can be relied upon for a new and much-desired Haiti. Many community leaders applauded this action and advocated for its continuation.

The National Education Fund, in partnership with UNESCO and the National Office for Partnership in Education (ONAPÉ), supported a week of activities in June 2023 in conjunction with World Environment Day. This mobilization week, initiated by the Caribbean Risk and Disaster Management Network, focused on the theme of Solutions to Plastic Pollution. The aim was to raise awareness among 100 Haitian secondary school students through four workshops on plastic waste transformation. The organizers emphasized the importance for students to engage in the fight against plastic pollution, (the theme that year) and to share their new-found knowledge with their peers and families. Such a commitment would go beyond environmental protection to create income-generating activities, building a sustainable and healthy future for the community while combatting poverty.

The Haiti Nationally Determined Contribution (2021) reported the need for establishing a health and environmental-education program and for the definition of a national plan for education on climate change and sustainable development to be integrated into the school curriculum at the primary level.

The Second National Communication on Climate Change (2013) emphasized that the theme of climate change was almost absent from curricula, or at least its teaching was not noticeable in schools in Haiti. According to the Contribution, the introduction of some modules in secondary or even university curricula in the field of international affairs was essential. Providing students with periodic short-term sessions could be a useful strategy in the short term.

ii. Climate change in teacher training and teaching resources

Teaching support for and resources on issues related to climate change and teacher training in climate change education are almost absent in Haiti.

The Haiti Sustainable Development Framework for 2017-2021 (2017) states that support from a United Nations team would assist in the implementation of teacher training policy at the preschool, primary, and secondary levels to enhance the quality of instruction. The teacher training would also include technical education and vocational training. The United Nations team would pay special attention to the alignment of vocational training with employment opportunities. However, nothing related to professional training about climate change was mentioned.

The Development and Capacity Building Plan for climate change adaptation (2021) mentions that several educators had chosen to incorporate climate adaptation into their classes, both at school and at university, even when the subject they taught might seem unrelated to climate issues. By doing so, they would be contributing to the education of future Haitian citizens. However, no examples are made available.

The Programme Ecole Normale d’Instituteurs: Matiere: Education à la Santé et à l’Environnement (2019-2020) addressed climate change in the chapter on risks of natural disaster. Topics related to the environment include definitions, types of environments (natural, artificial, and social), environmental concepts (fauna, flora, and ecosystems), environmental components (biosphere, atmosphere, lithosphere, hydrosphere, and endosphere), causes of environmental deterioration, means of environmental protection, natural resources (definitions, categories, importance, usage, and effects on the environment), energy (definitions, categories, sources, and uses), pollution (definitions, origins, causes, consequences, and measures to combat pollution), sanitation (definitions, types, benefits, and challenges), population growth (definitions, causes, consequences, and preventive measures), risk and disaster management (definitions, origin, stages of risk management, and importance), disaster prevention and risk reduction (measures and sectors concerned), aspects of risk and disaster management (training, education, threat and risk mapping, and action plans), natural disaster risks (major risks; identification; types; consequences, management stages; appropriate behaviours; and measures to take before, during, and after a catastrophe), and school preparedness for disaster risks.

The Franco-Haitian University of Cap-Haïtien, a member institution of the United Nations Academic Impact in Haiti, developed an environmental-education project as part of its community awareness and valorization initiatives. The project was supported by the Association for the Development of the North-East and the French embassy in Port-au-Prince. The program was designed for primary school teachers to e We’re good nhance their abilities to educate students about the importance of environmental protection. The program has been offered to more than 60 teachers in 10 schools through six training modules covering a wide range of topics, including reflections on environmental education, ecological elements, fundamentals of sustainable development, educational approaches to sustainable development, and management of extracurricular environmental projects. Upon completion of the training, teachers were to implement local awareness campaigns, community recycling programs, innovations in waste management to ensure proper waste disposal, and use of reforestation techniques in schools and their surroundings. Participants h expressed a high level of satisfaction with the program.

iii. Climate change in higher education

Few universities have special departments teaching about environmental sciences and management and issues related directly and indirectly to climate change.

The Presidential Decree on Environmental Management (2006) in Haiti focused, in Article 88, on encouraging scientific research and knowledge of biodiversity. The Ministry of Environment was to take appropriate measures to support and promote research activities related to the conservation of natural resources and to sustainable development.

The National Disaster Risk Management Plan: 2019-2030 states that both urban and rural populations are adopting preventive measures in the face of disaster risks, including, among others, the integration of disaster risk management into school, university, and vocational training curricula.

The Development and Capacity Building Plan for climate change adaptation (2021) reported that the main academic institutions in the country, the State University of Haiti and Quisqueya University, were working on the creation of new university programs on climate change. This training initiative, conducted in cooperation with foreign partners, would establish a bachelor’s/master’s/doctoral cycle and a university diploma in climate change. The Plan also states that supporting research in Haiti is, perhaps above all, about enhancing the image of the teacher-researcher, recognizing their contribution to society, and thereby stimulating interest in such careers. It is in this context that the Plan suggests the creation of a young researcher award on climate change adaptation.

The Communication Strategy for Haiti’s National Adaptation Plan Process Process (2021) called for mobilizing the academic and research community to tackle the impacts of adaptation measures on the country’s development; and enhancing scientific research in the field of adaptation to climate change.

The aim of the Faculty of Agricultural Science and Environment at Quisqueya University isto improve both the quantity and quality of the food produced so that children an develop through access to healthy, locally sourced food. The Faculty also seeks to double the production and productivity of Haitian agriculture, in terms of both quantity and quality, and to create more wealth along the value chains of the production, processing, and marketing of agricultural and agro-industrial products.

The Climate Change Research Team-ERC2 at Quisqueya University was created in 2019. It focuses on climate variability and its impacts on hydrological cycles, continental ecosystems, and coastal marine ecosystems. ERC2 also disseminates information, provides training, and raises awareness about climate change using environmental-education techniques, with the goal of influencing behavioural changes among the population regarding climate issues. Such changes in behaviour should ultimately lead to better management of natural resources used for the production of goods and services in Haiti. The Research Team, organized its first international conference on climate change education in 2023. Organized around the theme Climate Change and the Haitian Space: Challenges and Perspectives, the conference brought together researchers, students, school children, government authorities, and representatives of the United Nations and partner institutions. The conference was divided into 10 main parts, including an inaugural session presented by Dr. Kesnel Delusca on the theme of Climate Change in Haiti: A Challenge for Development and National Security. Nine scientific presentations over three sessions that focused on three themes (reconstructing past climate variability, vulnerability and adaptation to climate change, and impacts of climate change on natural ecosystems) enabled students participating in the ERC2 immersion program to present their work to the public.

The Second National Communication on Climate Change (2013) stated that there was no widely recognized specialization in climate change at universities in Haiti, whether in international affairs, interdisciplinary scientific studies, or community citizen education programs.

The Haiti Nationally Determined Contribution (2021) referred to the need for the deliberate involvement of university institutions in training programs, research, and systematic observation of all aspects related to climate change to inform the regular update of the Contribution and participation in the global assessment.

iv. Climate change in training and adult learning 

The Presidential Decree on Environmental Management (2006) mentions in Article 24 the importance of establishing and, if necessary, proposing adjustments to the training curriculum for Environmental Monitoring Corps officers as well as courses for substitute government commissioners specializing in environmental issues.

The project, Combatting Climate Change in Haiti’s Nord Department (KLIMA; 2017-2021) was carried out in partnership with Viridis Terra International and with local partners Jeunes Entrepreneurs Agricoles du Nord, Organisation des Jeunes en Action, and Campus Henri Christophe de Limonade. Two thousand people were directly involved in the project, and 490,000 people indirectly involved. The aim was to support communities and local partners in the Nord and Nord-Est regions of Haiti in their efforts to combat climate change, in particular by improving ecosystem resilience, and to provide them with guidance in developing a sustainable, green economy. The KLIMA project received support from CECI’s Volunteer Cooperation Program to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by creating sustainable-energy forests and setting up a system to recycle organic waste through composting. To build community awareness for the fight against climate change, the project conducted a number of awareness-raising and training activities on climate issues and adaptation measures in Haiti’s North and North-East regions. It also held workshops to demonstrate the technical innovations introduced by KLIMA.

The Ministry of Environment, through the Directorate of Education, Inspection, and Environmental Monitoring and the Directorate of Climate Change, held a two-day training session in January 2019. Around forty employees of the Ministry attended the session, which focused on the theme Climate Change, Monitoring, and Environmental Inspection. The aim of this workshop was to train these employees from the technical and departmental directorates who would be responsible for transmitting the knowledge to agents of the Directorate of Education, Inspection, and Environmental Monitoring. Interventions focused on measures related to the applicability of environmental laws; the methods that would be used to make environmental monitoring more prevalent in municipalities and provinces, using modern monitoring and inspection tools, gathering useful information for decision-making through geomatics.

Under the auspices of Welthungerhilfe, a non-governmental organization, and in collaboration with the Association of Journalists of South East, fifteen journalists from Jacmel who worked in different media attended a two-day training seminar in July 2012 on climate change and its consequences and on risk management. The objective of this seminar was to give journalists the tools needed to increase public awareness so as to reduce losses in human life in case of natural disasters. After this training session, participants would have more capacity in the collection and processing of information related to such situations. Instructors at the seminar conveyed techniques for covering events in crisis situations. The instructors focused on the vocabulary that journalists must master during the coverage of such events to avoid doing more harm to the population through the information disseminated; urging journalists to gather information when they had to make a statement during a crisis situation. The organization of this seminar facilitated journalists to better control the weather terms, in order to explain them clearly to the population. The Association had organized a series of training for journalists of the department, and this session was the fifth in the preceding three months that addressed topics related to the environment.

Haiti Climat, the only multimedia platform dedicated to producing and disseminating content on the environment and climate change, and Studio Canek, a digital media company, joined forces in March 2023 to implement an online training project aimed at educating and raising awareness among Haitian journalists about coastal resilience. This project involved a series of training sessions for journalists across the country, aiming to raise awareness and to equip them with knowledge about major issues related to climate change and the various ways coastal residents can act to reduce or even eliminate risks and disasters. Participants were to receive clearly explained scientific training on coastal environments through captivating videos, exclusive interviews with Haitian and international experts, and useful data produced or translated into Haitian Creole.

The Haiti Nationally Determined Contribution (2021) stated that, for more significant impact, capacity-building and resource-mobilization processes must be combined with a technology-transfer process, especially of those technologies that are appropriate for the Haitian context or identified through the country’s technology needs assessment (such as photovoltaic solar-power plants, solar water pumps, fruit orchards, agroforestry, rainwater-harvesting systems, water meters, terracing, gabions, and elevated construction). All programs or projects resulting from mitigation, adaptation, and loss and damage measures should systematically include a capacity-building component.

The Second National Communication on Climate Change (2013) stated that, in the process of strengthening the capacity of the National Centre for Meteorology, five staff members were awarded a training scholarship by the World Meteorological Organization Secretariat in 2010. This scholarship provided an 11-month training program at the National School of Meteorology in Toulouse, France. Additionally, internships at Météo-France in Martinique and Guadeloupe were under consideration for these scholarship recipients as part of this training program.

  1. Climate change communication in the country

i. Climate change and public awareness 

The Presidential Decree on Environmental Management in Haiti (2006) called for participation in providing information and raising public awareness about the necessary changes in attitude and behaviour for protecting water resources and combatting soil degradation at the scale of hydrographic watersheds.

The Strategic Development Plan of Haiti (2012) reported that raising awareness and educating the population and businesses about environmental issues is a priority as well as promoting responsible consumption of electrical energy, it will be necessary to conduct awareness and training campaigns on electricity demand management tailored to various customer categories, develop incentives for using energy-efficient equipment, and implement a project allowing entrepreneurs willing to disconnect from the grid during peak hours to do so. Additionally, informing, raising awareness, and educating the population regarding various aspects of waste management at different levels are essential.

The National Climate Change Adaptation Plan 2022-2030 mentions that regarding the health sector, the actions primarily focus, among other things, on awareness-raising and appropriate health policies that take into account the impacts of climate change.

Four months before the United Nations Climate Change Conference COP28, a delegation comprising representatives from the Ministry of Environment participated in the pre-conference in Bonn, Germany. The Directorate of Climate Change of the Ministry of Environment organized a reflection workshop in Port-au-Prince in August 2023, focusing on the outcomes of the pre-COP28 event. The discussion revolved around the strategies to be implemented for more effective negotiations during COP28, scheduled from 30 November to 12 December 2023 in Dubai. Furthermore, another reflection workshop was scheduled for September 2023 on losses and damages, also in preparation for COP28.

On 5 June 2022, World Environment Day was celebrated with the slogan Only One Earth, emphasizing the sub-theme Living Sustainably in Harmony with Nature. The HART’S community organized this conversation around the theme Creativity as a Tool for Raising Awareness about Climate Change and Civic Engagement “to sensitize our young artists, who are ambassadors of the country’s image, to the ecological challenges in the country.” The aim was to provide them with appropriate information about Haiti’s environmental conditions and practical solutions. This conversation also allowed the exploration and analysis of artistic practices used to educate and sensitize young people and of how a young creative individual can contribute to nature conservation through their talent.

About 200 young leaders, professionals, entrepreneurs, researchers, professors, journalists, and students from all 10 provinces of Haiti gathered to discuss concrete actions to address environmental issues in October 2022. This event, which marked the 7th edition of the Youth Conference on Climate Change, took place in Pétion-ville. The Conference occurred in a context marked by nuclear issues, insecurity, violence, and cascading natural disasters, during which discussions about ecology and climate change have been central concerns.The Conference was held under the theme Building a More Resilient Society in the Face of Climate Change and featured interventions from Tatiana Villegas, UNESCO representative in Haiti, and Garvey Myrvelt Louis Jean, director of planning and operations at the Observatory on Health and Climate Change in Haiti.

The FOKAL foundation and the French Institute of Haiti organized a week of activities on the theme Climate Change and Societal Transformation: Haitian Exemplarities in October 2015 that highlighted local initiatives in environmental protection and adaptation to climate change. The events, including conferences, practical workshops, project visits, cultural activities, and cooking classes featuring local products, allowed participants, including students, practitioners, representatives of professional organizations, and scientists, to engage in discussions and learn through a dialogue between theory and practice. The aim of these activities was inform, raise awareness, and foster debates, enabling participants to draw lessons for contributing individually and collectively to reducing climate and environmental risks.

The organization Médiaex Caribéenne organized a conference-debate on climate justice in September 2023 with the theme Politics and Governance for Climate Justice: Charting a Path for Haiti’s Future. This event took place on the campus of Quisqueya University in Turgeau, where several students participated in the discussion. Lindia Dupré, the founder of Médiaex Caribéenne, stated that the purpose of the conference-debate was to raise awareness among the population about climate change and climate justice, encouraging people to adopt behaviours that protect the environment. She emphasized that this initiative would help limit the damages caused by global warming in many countries worldwide. She also highlighted the need for more stringent legislation in Haiti to protect the environment, given Haiti’s regular exposure to hurricanes, tropical storms, torrential rains, floods, and earthquakes, which have devastating human and economic costs.

The Second National Communication on Climate Change (2013) stated that the weakness of Haiti’s climate risk forecasting systems and the low level of awareness in the community about the challenges of climate change remained a growing concern. Lastly, it is worth noting the beginning of a major awareness campaign led by the Directorate of Climate Change at the Ministry of Environment in collaboration with the Local Development Program of the North-East. This represented a significant first in terms of awareness in Haiti, and it was expected that 1,500 school children and community leaders would be sensitized to the issue of climate change in that.

ii. Climate change and public access to information 

The Presidential Decree on Environmental Management in Haiti (2006) stated that it was the duty of the state to promote ecological education by allowing citizens better access to relevant information so that they could participate in and be aware of decisions that would have implications for the environment and sustainable development. According to the Decree, the state should also facilitate the flow of information within the public administration on environmental issues and policies related to priority programs that had been identified in international conventions on the environment in which Haiti is involved.

The National Disaster Risk Management Plan: 2019-2030 (2019) stated the need to provide specific climate information for each sector, especially those related to livelihood, noting that creating information-management units at the regional level had improved the capacity for data collection and analysis for the National Disaster Risk Management System.

The Haiti Sustainable Development Framework (2017) stated that access to information in Haiti remained a major challenge and concern, notably due to an environment marked by chronic political instability. Through the establishment of an environmental-information system, the United Nations was to contribute to making environmental information accessible to facilitate awareness among stakeholders and informed decision-making regarding environmental degradation and climate change.

The Development and Capacity Building Plan (2021) for climate change adaptation highlighted that several initiatives for environmental-information portals had been tried in Haiti, without any of them fully satisfying the requirements. It would be important to assess these initiatives and capitalize on the results achieved. Information and data related to the environment in general and to adaptation to climate change are scarce, out-of-date, and often not made available to stakeholders. Data producers did not fully fulfill their roles, and the mechanisms for data collection were not always operational. Infrastructure initiatives, such as the environmental-information system established by United Nations Environmental Programme, could change the situation in this regard.

The Haiti Regeneration Initiative)/ Cote Sud Initiative was a joint project of the Earth Institute, the United Nations Environment Programme, and various government agencies, non-governmental organizations, and other partners in Haiti. This project, which included research, analysis, and advising work, focused on the relevant and critical need for enhanced science-based regional and national databases and monitoring systems. The Earth Institute created tools that support decisions about planning, policy, and programming within Haitian knowledge networks, university research communities, and government agencies. The Centre of Research and Study of the Environment provided a communication strategy for the program and contributed an analysis of environmental risk perceptions to the report. One main outcome of this project was a survey of 1,170 households and a report that provided an integrated multi-sector analysis for ten communities in Haiti.

After a “census bureau” (bureau du recensement) conducted Haiti’s first population census in 1950, the Haitian Institute of Statistics and Informatics was established. The main aims of the Institute are 1) to produce and make available, to users in general and government officials in particular, accurate, reliable, up-to-date, and timely numerical information that provides a better understanding of the national reality; 2) to develop, elaborate, and deploy technological services related to information and public services and coordinate these activities for the system, according to the strategic orientations defined by the National Council of Statistics and Informatics.

The Development and Capacity Building Plan for climate change adaptation (2021) stated that information and data, on the environment in general and climate change adaptation in particular, were scarce, lacked regular updates, and were not made available to stakeholders frequently. Data producers often did not fulfill their responsibilities, and data-collection mechanisms were not always operational. Structured initiatives, such as the environmental information system established by the United Nations Environmental Programme, could significantly improve the situation in this regard.

The Ministry of Environment, through the Directorate of Climate Change and in partnership with the United Nations Development Programme, organized a two-day workshop on the Green Climate Fund in August 2018. This initiative was part of Haiti’s preparation for accessing the Fund. The objective was to inform the various participants about the accreditation procedures and modalities for accessing the Green Climate Fund and, at the same time, revise the operating manual of the National Designated Authority.

Kalson Wouj Magazin, developed by the Ministry of Environment, is a tool for sharing environmental information that allows reconnecting with the living environment to build new individual and collective relationships with the country’s environment. The Magazine is part of the effort to democratize information in the environmental sector, aiming to generate general interest in citizen engagement and eco-responsible actions. The magazine is published quarterly in both French and Haitian Creole. Each issue is dedicated to a specific theme and presents the most recent knowledge in the field. The Magazine has emphasized the promotion of environmental education throughout the educational system, as well as the promotion of scientific research, education for environmental protection. Initiatives to conserve the country’s biodiversity are of paramount importance; and facilitating access to information is increasingly considered a strategy to ensure that citizens and civil society in general (businesses, consumers, associations, unions, and other entities) play their roles.

In March 2022, the general coordinator of the Action for Climate, Environment, and Sustainable Development environmental journalist Patrick Saint-Pré, advocated for a specialist press for the environment and sustainable development in Haiti, a country among the 10 most vulnerable to the effects of climate change. “High-quality media coverage on issues related to climate change can lead to better public information, as well as better information for decision-makers and the development of more effective policies,” said Saint-Pré. A specialist press can inform vulnerable communities about potential impacts and how they can adapt.

The Second National Communication on Climate Change (2013) stated that the National Centre for Meteorology did not have the capacity to gather real-time observational data and lacked access to the raw data and information needed for producing early warnings of hydrometeorological disasters, forecasts, and other operational products and services. The lack of computers and specialized tools severely limited the Centre’s ability to produce forecasts beyond the current day and to broadcast early warnings. The resulting information must be made available and communicated in an understandable format to decision-makers. Additionally, climate services and awareness about available climate information needed to be improved and their value to decision-makers demonstrated.

iii. Climate change and public participation 

A three-day training workshop, organized by UN Migration and funded by the European Union, on migration, the environment, and climate change policy occurred in July 2015 in Haiti. Approximately 25 participants from Haitian ministries, universities, and civil society attended the event, aimed at enhancing the capacity of experts and professionals to integrate migration and the environment into policy development. The workshop preceded the United Nations Conference on Climate Change COP 21, which took place in Paris in December of that year and was to focus on integrating human mobility into the expected Paris Agreement. The event coincided with the finalization of Haiti’s national migration policy. Haiti was the first country in the region to integrate the environment and climate change into its migration policy and to include migration in its position on climate change negotiations.

The National Citizens’ Congress for Climate in Haiti in 2019 (brochure) was an exceptional opportunity for 141 activists (77 men, 64 women) from nine provinces to come together and encourage a sense of empowerment. The main objective of the Congress was to propose a common advocacy strategy for energy transition in Haiti by defining concrete common citizen actions and structuring a national movement. Specifically, at the end of the Congress, a road map for Alternatiba Haiti Coordination was to be validated by all participants for the years to follow. Additionally, the Congress aimed to found a national citizen movement for the climate, capable of influencing public policies considering global, regional, and national environmental and social challenges. Diversity was a significant strength appreciated by all: gender, age, socio-professional and economic categories (farmers, researchers, journalists, students, and social workers), and ability.

After holding its first two meetings in Kenscoff, the Alternatiba Collective and the Francophone Environmental Action Group chose Cité Soleil as the venue for the third Alternatiba Village, focusing on waste management in December 2017. The Alternatiba Village showcased concrete initiatives that were developing all over Haiti in the fields of renewable energy, waste management, citizenship, environmental education, food, and ecological construction. The Village was also an opportunity for visitors and participants to attend workshops, demonstrations, panel discussions, and cultural events, allowing them to learn while being entertained.

YoU -CAN Haiti, whose slogan is “Change the mindsets, not the climate,” was launched during United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change COP25 in Madrid. The Initiative aims to strengthen climate action led by young people by supporting existing youth and youth networks and creating connections between them. Youth UNESCO Climate Action Network Haiti – YoU CAN Hait -i is a network of young professionals, students, journalists, climate activists, and Haitian volunteers who have joined forces in the fight against climate change, with the central action being the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goal 13 (Climate Action) outlined in the 2030 Agenda.. The network was founded by UNESCO Haiti in August 2020 and has worked continuously with UNESCO representatives to involve young people in the fight against climate change. Awareness activities, panel discussions, training sessions, and initiatives related to climate change adaptation and the environment in general are among the network’s main responsibilities.

  1. Monitoring and evaluation

i. Country monitoring 

The monitoring of climate change communication and education had not been assigned to any specific ministry or agency at the time of this review.

The National Office for Environmental Evaluations works under the auspices of the Ministry of Environment. Among the Office’s responsibilities are 1) developing and enforcing methodological frameworks for conducting strategic environmental assessments, environmental audits, and environmental and social impact assessments and 2) monitoring the implementation of environmental monitoring and follow-up plans and of other commitments made by project developers. However, no evaluation and monitoring report on climate change education was available at the time of this review.

The Strategic Development Plan of Haiti (2012) emphasized the importance of establishing and implementing an environmental assessment procedure. Similarly, The National Climate Change Adaptation Plan 2022-2030 states that impact, vulnerability, and climate-related risk assessments on ecological and human systems are of great importance and represent an almost indispensable step in the iterative process of adaptation. Conducted using various approaches and methods, such assessments, both predictive and retrospective, provide a solid factual basis for more informed decision-making about adaptation and development, taking into account the risks.

The National Disaster Risk Management Plan: 2019-2030 (2019) called for 1) establishing systematic and periodic assessments of vulnerability to disasters within each sector, including productive sectors (agriculture, commerce and industry, and tourism), and 2) assessing the equipment and tools for data collection and analysis of disaster risks, across the entire country, and ensuring their availability.

The Sustainable Development Framework 2017-2021 (2017) stated that the development of disaster prevention, preparedness, and response capacities, as well as the improvement of knowledge and the development of a system for monitoring progress and analyzing risk would contribute to strengthening the resilience of populations and territories to natural disasters and climate change.

The Sustainable Development Report (2023) monitors Haiti’s progress in achieving the 2030 Sustainable Development Goals. In 2023, Sustainable Development Goal 13 (Climate Action) had been achieved, and progress was improving moderately.

ii. MECCE Project Monitoring

The Decennial Education and Training Plan (2020), developed by the Ministry of National Education and Vocational Training, mentions the word ‘environment’ 23 times, but almost all references are related to the school and physical environment; ‘climate change’ 1 time; ‘sustainable development’ 7 times; and ‘biodiversity’ not at all. For a National Education Pact in Haiti (2010) mentions ‘environment’ 40 times, but almost all references are related to the school and physical environment; ‘sustainable development’ 4 times; and ‘climate change’ and ‘biodiversity’ not at all.


This profile was reviewed by Jean Wiener, Executive Director, Fondation pour la Protection de la Biodiversité Marine.

Last modified:

Mon, 27/11/2023 - 09:38