Wed | Aug 23, 2017

NEPA budget allocation cut

Published:Thursday | February 16, 2017 | 2:35 PM

The National Environment and Planning Agency (NEPA) is to have less money to protect and conserve the country’s environment.

The Government has allocated a sum of $812.5 million to cover NEPA’s expenses for the 2017-16 financial year, down from the $838.4 million it received this current fiscal year.

The budget for NEPA is contained in the Estimates of Expenditure, which is currently before Parliament.

One of the areas hit by the reduced allocation is pollution abatement activities by NEPA.

The agency plans to spend $12.2 million next fiscal year, which is about $5 million less than what was allocated for the current financial year.

The expenditure for air quality monitoring has been cut from $9.4 million to $4.8 million.

Additionally, the allocation for activities related to the protection of landscape and biodiversity has also taken a hit.

NEPA plans to spend $784 million, down by approximately $71 million.

The cut in NEPA’s budgets comes amid recent calls from environmentalists for the Government to increase the agency’s resources to respond to environmental crises.

Recently, The Sunday Gleaner reported that sections of the country are in environmental crisis due to deteriorating air quality.