ICYMI in Jamaica, October 13, 2020: The Kindness Edition


Well, Hurricane Delta went away (taking most of Bluefields Beach in Westmoreland away with it) and we are left to reflect, once more, on our own human fragility in the face of climate change and COVID-19. Some of us would rather pretend, however, and sip on Bacardi or whatever their favorite drink is, without a … More ICYMI in Jamaica, October 13, 2020: The Kindness Edition

Jamaica’s Net Zero Energy Building: What It’s All About and Why It’s Important


Did you know that Jamaica now has the first and only Net Zero Energy Building (NZEB) in the Caribbean? We are all concerned about energy savings and efficiency, as well as greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and their impact on climate change. In 2010 buildings accounted for 32 % of total global final energy use and 19 % … More Jamaica’s Net Zero Energy Building: What It’s All About and Why It’s Important

BRACED II: All About Strengthening Homes and Empowering People


The Municipality of Portmore in St. Catherine is the second largest city in Jamaica after Kingston. The dormitory town’s population was officially 182,000 in 2011, but many say it is now closer to 300,000. I’m not sure quite why this figure is in dispute; but I know there are some boundary issues. It’s also the … More BRACED II: All About Strengthening Homes and Empowering People

Jamaican Writer on Commonwealth Short Story Prize Shortlist


It seems our Jamaican writers are going from strength to strength. Here is some more good news from Commonwealth Writers. The 2016 Commonwealth Short Story Prize attracted nearly 4000 entries from 47 countries, and a Jamaican writer is on the list: Nova Gordon-Bell. According to the website, Ms. Gordon-Bell is “a graduate of the University of the … More Jamaican Writer on Commonwealth Short Story Prize Shortlist

Bright Ideas and Business Plans: Katalyxt ‘s Young Innovators


It was break time at José Marti Technical High School. Students were heading in all directions around the central covered courtyard. I watched a girl walking straight-backed and slow in her long-skirted deep blue uniform past the school assembly hall. A student was shouting persistently, trying to catch the attention of another across the courtyard – … More Bright Ideas and Business Plans: Katalyxt ‘s Young Innovators

Very Special Children: A Visit to the S.T.E.P. Centre


It is a bright morning with an energetic breeze – the weekend’s rains all blown away. White butterflies from the lignum vitae next door bounce around in the wind. As I enter the S.T.E.P. Centre, the pounding of a Rihanna song reaches my ears. Nika, a blue-haired Dance School student, is getting the children moving. … More Very Special Children: A Visit to the S.T.E.P. Centre

Wheels Up: President Obama Leaves Jamaica Under a Rainbow Arch


President Barack Obama is no longer with us. It is almost as if we are picking up the pieces now. Today will be a normal day. It’s too early perhaps to say whether President Obama’s just under 24 hour visit will have lasting impact. Is the euphoria of the last couple of days already starting … More Wheels Up: President Obama Leaves Jamaica Under a Rainbow Arch

Riverton Fire Aftermath: The Impacts of Benzene on Public Health


There is still considerable concern over the long-term health impact of the recent fire at Riverton city dump, which emitted smoke and pollution for over two weeks into the largest built-up area in Jamaica – Kingston, St. Andrew and St. Catherine. The Jamaica Environment Trust (JET) just shared this article on a chemical of particular … More Riverton Fire Aftermath: The Impacts of Benzene on Public Health

A Contract Ended, An Embarrassing Interview and A Presidential Visit: Wednesday, March 18, 2015


As I opened the door just now, the aroma of chemical-laden smoke wafted in. I quickly shut it again, and am now sealed in the house. Yes, as of this afternoon (and a week after it started) the fire at the Riverton City dump is still very much alight. I just posted the statement and … More A Contract Ended, An Embarrassing Interview and A Presidential Visit: Wednesday, March 18, 2015