Deputy National Emergency Coordinator Colin Gillett and Orange Walk District Coordinator Suleima Celiz represented Belize last week at a technical meeting for the Mesoamerican Network for Integrated Risk Management held in Mexico City.
The Mesoamerican Network for Integrated Risk Management is a component of the larger Mesoamerica Integration and Development Project which includes all Central American countries as well as Colombia and the Dominican Republic.
This project is a cooperative initiative that facilitates the construction of consensus, the articulation of cooperation efforts and the attraction of resources to strengthen Mesoamerican integration and development processes with the objective of improving quality of life.
The objective of this particular component is to develop mechanisms and tools for the generation and dissemination of information on integrated risk management, in order to reduce the vulnerability of Mesoamerica to disasters caused by natural phenomena and protect its inhabitants, ecosystems and public and private infrastructure.
This meeting was a technical forum to discuss the advances in data collection to be fed into the regional Geographic Information System (GIS) that has been developed and housed in Mexico. The system will integrate all risk and emergency data and maps developed in shape files and into one large database for the region.
Belize’s participants, for their part, reported on the implementation of our country’s National Spatial Data Infrastructure (NSDI), which will set the standards for Belize in all things GIS and mapping related. This NSDI will also set the protocols for data/map sharing within the country and with regional partners. It was proposed that the project steering committee convene a meeting in Belize to discuss possible opportunities for capacity development.
The Mesoamerican Risk Management meeting took place on November 15 and 16, 2017.