In light of the influx of sargassum in the Caribbean region, Jamaica will host a regional forum to facilitate collaboration to address the matter. The forum, which is being spearheaded by the Global Tourism Resilience and Crisis Management Centre (GTRCM), will be held at the Regional Headquarters of the University of the West Indies, Mona tomorrow, Friday July 26.
The objective of the forum is to share knowledge and best practices as it relates to sargassum, specifically the type which originates from the coast of Brazil. The outcome from the forum will be to identify gaps and foster synergies towards a solution.
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In highlighting the importance of finding effective solutions to the sargassum issue, Minister Bartlett said, “Jamaica is taking the lead on this critical issue of preventing sargassum from negatively impacting our beaches which will ultimately, negatively impact our tourism.
We are being proactive as the onset of sargassum poses a real threat to not just Jamaica but the entire region that is so heavily dependent on tourism.”
Sargassum is a type of brown seaweed and numerous species are distributed throughout the temperate and tropical oceans of the world, where they inhabit shallow water and coral reefs. It often causes a foul odor, releasing fumes of sulfur compounds that rust metals, and damage modern conveniences.
Some of the presenters who will be in attendance are mechanical engineers from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Precision Engineering Research Group; and noted researchers from the University of the West Indies and the GTRCM.
“I am pleased that we will have some of the brightest minds on this subject area who will engage in discussion on the possible avenues the region can employ to prevent this threat from devastating our shores and collective tourism product,” added Minister Bartlett.