News: Union Environment Minister has released Management Effectiveness Evaluation (MEE) of 146 National Parks and Wildlife Sanctuaries.
What is Management Effectiveness Evaluation (MEE)?
- Management Effectiveness Evaluation(MEE) tool is increasingly being used by governments and international bodies to understand the strengths and weaknesses of the protected area management systems.
- It is defined as the assessment of how well National Parks and Wildlife Sanctuaries are being managed—primarily, whether they are protecting their values and achieving the goals and objectives agreed upon.
- Indicators: There are 30 ”Headline Indicators” developed under six elements of MEE framework suitable in Indian context for evaluation. The ratings are assigned in four categories, as Poor – upto 40%; Fair – 41 to 59%; Good – 60 to 74%; Very Good – 75% and above.
- What was the need of this tool? At present, India has a network of 903 protected areas covering about five per cent of the total geographic area of the country. India also has 70% of the global tiger population, 70% of Asiatic lions and more than 60% of leopards global population. Hence, in order to assess the efficacy of protected areas, evaluation of management effectiveness is required.
- The results of the present assessment are encouraging with an overall mean MEE score of 62.01% which is higher than the global mean of 56%.
- Jaldapara national park (West Bengal), Raiganj wildlife sanctuary (West Bengal), Sainj Wildlife Sanctuary (Himachal Pradesh), Tirthan wildlife sanctuary(Himachal Pradesh) and Great Himalayan national park (Himachal Pradesh) have been declared as top five national parks and wildlife sanctuaries in India.
- Turtle Wildlife Sanctuary in Uttar Pradesh was the worst performer in the survey.
Other Initiatives launched:
- MEE of Marine Protected Areas: A new framework for MEE of Marine Protected Areas has been also jointly prepared by Wildlife Institute of India(WII) and Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change (MoEF&CC).
- Management Effectiveness Evaluation of Indian Zoos(MEE-ZOO): It is a framework which proposes guidelines, criteria and indicators for evaluation of zoos of the country through Management Effectiveness Evaluation Process(MEE-ZOO) in a manner which is discrete, holistic and independent.
- The assessment criteria and indicators look beyond the traditional concepts including issues of animal welfare, husbandry and sustainability of resources and finance.
To read about Protected Areas(PA) Networks: https://blog.forumias.com/all-about-protected-area-networks/