Jamaica Hosts Wastewater Management Workshop

November 20, 2015

Jamaica joins the rest of the Caribbean region in hosting the first Global Environment Facility (GEF) Caribbean Regional Fund for Wastewater (CReW) Management National Workshop.

The workshop is scheduled for November 23 to 24 at the Jamaica Conference Centre. Participants will discuss new opportunities for financing wastewater investments; examine sustainable approaches to wastewater treatment and the reuse of treated effluent.

The National Environment and Planning Agency (NEPA), in collaboration with the GEF-CReW Focal Point in partnership with the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP),- Caribbean Environment Programme (CEP) is hosting the workshop.

Chris Corbin, Programme Officer at UNEP said, "the recent ratification of the Land Based Sources of Marine Pollution or LBS Protocol by the Government of Jamaica offers both challenges and opportunities. The challenge will be to expand its ongoing efforts to prevent and reduce pollution of the environment in particular from pollutants such as solid waste and sewage."

He noted that Jamaica has already demonstrated that it has prioritized the issue of sewage management through its participation in the GEF funded Caribbean Regional Fund for Wastewater Management Project.

"CReW is being implemented by IDB and UNEP and the experiences of this project will be shared during this national consultation. The dialogue will seek not only to share the lessons from involvement in the project to date but to identify new opportunities for financing new wastewater investments and for expanding treatment across the island," added Corbin.

Anthony McKenzie, NEPA's Director of Environmental Conservation Division said that the recently enacted Natural Resources Conservation Authority Wastewater and Sludge Regulations provide the framework for effective wastewater management in Jamaica.

"An important feature of the regulation is that it provides an incentive base for the beneficial reuse of treated effluent and sludge. This is important when we consider the implications of climate change and the need to wisely use our resources. These issues will form part of the critical discussion at the workshop," said McKenzie.

The two day workshop will see participants drawn from financiers, actuaries, accounting professionals, design engineers, community representatives, scientists and environmental professionals as they share information on the GEF-CReW Project, Jamaica's experience in testing a prototype for sustainable financing of wastewater management and wastewater resources as a strategy linked with climate change.

GEF CReW is a four-year project funded by the Global Environment Facility that focuses on piloting revolving financing mechanisms and wastewater management reforms in the Caribbean region.

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February 16, 2015