Tuesday, October 12, 2021 — On October 19, 2021, the OECS Commission will be hosting a Zero Waste Webinar with focused discussions on dealing with marine pollution, an issue that threatens to derail the region’s efforts at transitioning to a blue economy. Coastal and marine resources of OECS Member States offer an unprecedented opportunity for strengthening the region’s economy and closing the gap on poverty and unemployment rates. The Caribbean Sea, with its high level of biodiversity, covers less than one percent of the world’s ocean area (2.75 million square kilometres), yet it directly supports the economies of 34 coastal and small island countries and territories.
However, pollution of the marine space is proving to be a major challenge for the Caribbean Region. While OECS Member States have solid waste management systems in place, it is noted that for the most part there is no source separation or collection of recyclables; no readily accessible local markets for recycled waste; and the cost of managing waste is exorbitant, posing a challenge for many governments to move to effective waste management systems, and contributing to marine litter issues.
In support of actions being undertaken to address waste management in the OECS including reducing waste to a minimum (zero waste), discussions on solutions are continuing with support from the Government of Norway through the Project, Building Resilience in the Eastern Caribbean through Reduction in Marine Litter (ReMLit), which seeks to build resilience in marine ecosystems.
The OECS Commission is looking forward to having fruitful discussions on the issue, and invites you to join the discussion as we chart a sustainable path to achieve zero waste. Register here for the Webinar: https://bit.ly/3DnwKKv.