St. Kitts and Nevis Hosts Key Workshop for Global GEF ISLANDS Programme on Chemical Management

St. Kitts and Nevis (SKNBS): This week, St. Kitts and Nevis is hosting a pivotal workshop under the global GEF ISLANDS programme, aimed at guiding Small Island Developing States (SIDS) toward environmentally sound management of chemicals and wastes. Organized by the Basel Convention Regional Centre for Training and Technology Transfer for the Caribbean (BCRC-Caribbean), this initiative is part of two critical projects funded by the Global Environment Facility (GEF) and implemented by the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO), and Inter-American Development Bank (IDB).

The workshop, which is being held at the St. Kitts Solid Waste Management Corporation, runs from July 9-10, 2024. It is part of the activity titled “Identification of Stockpiles and Development of Disposal Strategies,” currently being executed in twelve project countries, including Saint Kitts and Nevis. This activity is crucial as many Caribbean nations face significant challenges in managing imported chemicals and chemical-containing products due to inadequate disposal mechanisms or facilities. Consequently, these hazardous substances are often stockpiled, awaiting proper disposal or export.

The project aims to develop strategies for managing and disposing of hazardous chemicals such as polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs), obsolete pesticides, dichloro-diphenyl-trichloroethane (DDT), POP-PBDEs, and HBCD in Waste Electrical and Electronic Equipment (WEEE), along with stabilisation strategies for selected mercury-added products (MAPs). The Government of Saint Kitts and Nevis, with support from the Saint Kitts and Nevis Bureau of Standards, seeks to minimize the use of these hazardous substances by adopting safer alternatives and removing outdated stocks and equipment containing these chemicals.

BCRC-Caribbean has partnered with TAUW, a consulting team, to execute this project activity. TAUW will utilize their extensive expertise to ensure the successful implementation of the initiative. As part of the Assessment Phase of Caribbean ISLANDS Activity 2.1.1, BCRCCaribbean is hosting twelve national workshops across participating countries. In Saint Kitts and Nevis, representatives from TAUW and BCRC-Caribbean will conduct national assessments to identify local stockpiles of the relevant hazardous streams.

The workshops aim to build capacity among key stakeholders involved in the waste management sector. The National Capacity Building Training and Stakeholder Workshops will take place at the St. Kitts and Nevis Solid Waste Management Corporation Conference Room in Basseterre. The first session was held today, July 9, 2024. This session focused on enhancing national-level capacity and discussing lessons learned and opportunities for improving
stockpile management.

For relevant stakeholders involved in the on-the-ground management of hazardous waste stockpiles, a technical classroom training on the inventory of hazardous waste stocks is scheduled for Wednesday, July 10, 2024. This technical training will cover hazardous waste inventory methodologies, classification, and storage requirements, promoting the environmentally sound and safe execution of hazardous waste management.

The GEF ISLANDS programme represents a significant effort to ensure the environmentally sound management of hazardous chemicals and waste in the Caribbean, ultimately protecting human health and the environment.

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