Basseterre, St. Kitts, July 2, 2021 (SKNIS): During the June 30, 2021 edition of “Working For You”, questions were raised related to environmental protection and water security in St. Kitts and Nevis. Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Environment, Ms. Sharon Rattan, and Director of the Department of Environment, Ms. June Hughes, both stressed the importance of water security and outlined works done thus far in addressing this issue.
“We are working to assist with some of these water-related challenges. The Ministry of Environment works a lot with the water department and (Ministry of) sustainable (Development). Sometimes water is not available, so we looked at some schools where nearby works may be ongoing and water may be unavailable at the school. We cannot have school without water. We had a project which installed water storage systems in schools throughout St. Kitts and Nevis. This is an example of some of the ways we work with different ministries and departments on matters related to the environment,” said Permanent Secretary Rattan.
Water storage systems were installed at the Dr. William Connor Primary School, Mcknight Pre-school, Industrial Site Pre-school, Cayon Primary, Beach Allen Primary, Dieppe Bay Primary, Tabernacle Primary and Sandy Point Primary schools. Director of the Department of Environment, Ms. June Hughes further indicated that addressing the water security issues requires a two-pronged approach, collaborating internationally and mitigating domestically.
“It’s two-fold, you have the international response where we join the international community in reducing global emissions…. But in relation to adapting to the changes in our water supply that we are seeing, we look at storing water because our rainfall patterns have changed so now water is becoming less reliable than in the past. We encourage persons to invest in those big black tanks to store water if you can’t afford to invest in a cistern so that in the dry season you can take some pressure off the water department by tapping into your own supply. You can also tap into the renewable energy sources, so you can buy solar water heaters and use stuff that uses wind energy,” said Director Hughes.
Permanent Secretary Rattan stated that the new Climate and Ocean Risk Vulnerability Index (CORVI) project to be implemented will help the Government of St. Kitts and Nevis in the future planning of Basseterre.