JIS News

Head of the United Nations (UN) Environment Caribbean Sub-Regional Office, Vincent Sweeney, says that a more collaborative approach will be taken to address waste management issues in the region.

Mr. Sweeney, who was addressing journalists at the end of the Caribbean Water and Wastewater Association (CWWA) 27th Annual Conference, at the Hilton Rose Hall Resort and Spa in Montego Bay, St. James, on October 12, said the meeting presented opportunities for more waste management collaborations in the region.

“We identified a number of opportunities to address some priorities of the region, including pollution, landfill management and the plastic bag ban. We agreed on a way forward to continue our collaborations and ensure that issues are addressed at the political level, possibly through the Caribbean Community (CARICOM) Secretariat, the various CARICOM councils, through meetings with regional environmental ministers and the United Nations,” Mr. Sweeney noted.

For her part, Senior Technician at the Belize Solid Waste Management Authority, Lumen Cayetano, said that the disaster waste workshop held on October 9 during the conference, resulted in a “commitment to develop disaster waste management plans (for the region) and the manner in which those plans will be implemented, considering the environmental impact of disaster  waste.”

“The fact that it is a special type of waste means its management requires much attention, she emphasised.”

Ms. Cayetano also underscored that regional stakeholders shared ideas and experiences, and presented case studies which should aid in the development of disaster waste management strategies.

The conference, which was held from October 8 to 12, brought together stakeholders from across the region to address the issues of water and waste as resources in sustainable development.