It’s time for the Caribbean to Break Up with Plastics!
That is the message from the Integrating Water, Land and Ecosystems in Caribbean Small Island Developing States (IWEco) Project, funded by the Global Environment Facility (GEF). That’s quite a mouthful!
For some reason Jamaica is not included in the Clean Seas project in the Caribbean. But in any case, I would like to draw your attention to the fact that the Caribbean has the second highest density of plastic waste in the world, after the Mediterranean. Not something to be proud of, at all.
Please read more below, watch the video and see what you think. It’s aimed at a youth audience.
Speaking of youth, I am hoping that patrons of the “Dream Weekend” party series in Negril (starting this week) will be responsible with their plastic trash! Nuh dutty up Jamaica!
The GEF IWEco Project launches a video in support of UNEP’s Clean Seas Campaign
“The Caribbean is the second most plastic-contaminated sea in the world after the Mediterranean Sea. Estimations of the volume of plastic waste in this area range from 600 to 1,414 plastic items per square kilometer in different locations.”
– Report on Status of Styrofoam and Plastic Bag Bans in the Wider Caribbean, UNEP – Caribbean Environment Programme, May 2019
On 31st July 2019, the Global Environment Facility-funded Integrating Water, Land and Ecosystems Management in Caribbean Small Island Developing States (GEF IWEco) Project, launches a short video which takes a lighter look at the issue of marine litter and asks everyone around the world to break-up with single-use plastics.
You can view the video here: https://youtu.be/j0FHWQSAP1M
In the Caribbean, plastic waste makes up a large proportion of debris reaching the sea from sources on land. In the ocean it harms marine life, threatens ecosystems, health and the region’s tourism-based economy. Plastic pollution not only diminishes the natural beauty for which the islands are known; it also compromises the role of the ocean as a provider of food, other resources, and livelihoods.
In February 2017, the United Nations Environment Programme (UN Environment) launched the #CleanSeas Campaign to engage governments, the public, civil society, and the private sector in the fight against marine plastic litter. It aimed to address the root-cause of marine litter by targeting the production and consumption of non-recoverable and single-use plastic by engaging citizens to address the problem in their daily lives. More than anything else, #CleanSeas aims to highlight the scale of the problem.
By April 2019, nine countries in the Wider Caribbean Region had joined sixty other nations in the #CleanSeas Campaign. These were Antigua and Barbuda, Barbados, Colombia, Costa Rica, Grenada, Panama, the Dominican Republic, Saint Lucia, and Trinidad and Tobago.
Several of these countries are participating in the IWEco Project which is partially executed by UN Environment’s Caribbean Environment Programme (CEP), Secretariat to the Cartagena Convention, the only legally binding environmental agreement in the Region.
CEP works to support implementation of the Land-Based Sources of Marine Pollution (LBS) Protocol and the Caribbean Regional Action Plan for Marine Litter (RAPMaLI).
In 2018, it prepared a technical research brief on the implementation of Styrofoam and Single Use Plastic Bag bans in the Caribbean, and, introduced an interactive map (https://www.unenvironment.org/cep/news/blogpost/styrofoam-and-plastic-bag-bans-caribbean- interactive-map) to help in the tracking of progress. These products are being used to raise awareness, throughout the region, on progress made to reduce marine pollution from trash.
IWEco is pleased to introduce this short video which is a true Caribbean collaboration between All Biz Media of Saint Lucia, which did the scripting and videography, and Future Crab Studios of Trinidad and Tobago, which wrote and produced the song and music. This effort was also supported by the Project’s Communications Partnership.
The Integrating Water, Land and Ecosystems Management in Caribbean Small Island Developing States (IWEco Project) is a five-year, regional project that builds upon the work of previous initiatives, to address water, land and biodiversity resource management as well as climate change.
IWEco’s objective is to contribute to the preservation of Caribbean ecosystems that are of global significance and to the sustainability of livelihoods. This will be done through the application of existing proven technologies and approaches best suited for small island developing states. The project will improve the management of fresh and coastal water resources, land resources and forests.
IWEco is funded by the Global Environment Facility (GEF), and the United Nations Environment Programme (UN Environment) is the lead Implementing agency for national and regional sub-projects, with the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) implementing some activities.
For more information contact:
Donna Sue Spencer
Communications Specialist, GEF IWEco Project
United Nations Environment Programme | 14-20 Port Royal Street | Kingston, Jamaica Phone: 1(876)-922-9267/9; Ext. 6225