Caribbean Institute for Meteorology and Hydrology becomes WMO Regional Climate Centre

CIMH-RCC group photo

After a four-year process, the Caribbean Institute for Meteorology and Hydrology (CIMH) has been officially designated as the World Meteorological Organization (WMO) Regional Climate Centre (RCC) for the Caribbean.

The achievement is a critical step in the implementation of the United Nations (UN)-supported and WMO-led Global Framework for Climate Services (GFCS) which recognizes that climate information and associated services are critical for improving the livelihoods of many people around the world, especially those in Small Island Developing States (SIDS), Least Developed Countries (LDCs) and Developing Countries.

CIMH, based in Barbados, is an organ of the Caribbean Meteorological Organisation (CMO). Its RCC designation makes it the first institution in North America, Central America and the Caribbean, and first Small Island Developing State, to host such a Centre.

WMO-designated RCCs generate and deliver regionally-focused climate information and prediction products as well as training and capacity-building.

Read more at: World Meteorological Organisation

CARICOM closer to developing regional regulations to improve energy performance in buildings

 

Members of the Regional Project Team, with invited officials in the front row (L-R): Mr. Glynn Morris, Programme Leader of the GIZ-implemented Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency Technical Assistance (REETA) Programme; Mrs. Sandy Peters-Phillips, Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Trade and Commerce, St. Vincent and Grenadines; Dr. Devon Gardner, Programme Manager for Energy in the CARICOM Secretariat; Mr. Ezra Ledger, Director of the St. Vincent and the Grenadines Bureau of Standards; Mr. Deryck  Omar, Chief Executive Officer of the CARICOM Regional Organisation for Standards and Quality.
Members of the Regional Project Team, with other officials. In front row (L-R):
Mr. Glynn Morris, Programme Leader, GIZ-implemented REETA Programme; Ms. Sandy Peters-Phillips, Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Trade and Commerce, St. Vincent and Grenadines; Dr. Devon Gardner, Programme Manager, Energy, CARICOM Secretariat; Mr. Ezra Ledger, Director, St. Vincent and the Grenadines Bureau of Standards; Mr. Deryck Omar, Chief Executive Officer, CROSQ

Energy conservation and the implementation of an Energy Efficiency Building Code are critical to mitigate the impacts of climate change which pose great risks to countries, like St. Vincent and the Grenadines, within the Caribbean. This was the sentiment expressed by the Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Trade and Commerce in St. Vincent and Grenadines, Ms. Sandy Peters-Phillips, on Monday 24 July, 2017, when she addressed the opening of the Second Meeting of the Regional Project Team (RPT) for the Development of the CARICOM Energy Efficiency Building Code (EEBC).

The Meeting was held in Kingstown over two days, 24-25 July 2017, and, according to Dr. Devon Gardner, Programme Manager for Energy within the CARICOM Secretariat, signalled the “collective intent of CARICOM to act in a collaborative and cohesive manner to give life an Energy Efficiency Building Code for the Region”.

Dr. the Hon. Ralph Gonsalves, Prime Minister of St. Vincent and the Grenadines, who was at the technical meeting session, provided critical insight into a number of key issues, especially the legal requirements and socioeconomic considerations at national levels, of which the RPT should be mindful. He indicated that the inclusive approach that was being pursued, with regard to the EEBC development, could contribute to balancing the technical options, which were being considered by the experts, with the national realities and provide an easier path for country adoption.

At this, the Second Meeting, the RPT reached consensus on a Draft Caribbean Application Document (CAD), just four months after the first meeting was convened in Kingston, Jamaica. The meeting also resulted in the endorsement of a programme of work for the effective, efficient and timely completion of the Regional EEBC.

Dr. the Honourable Ralph Gonsalves, Prime Minister of St. Vincent and the Grenadines, makes a point while addressing members of the Regional Project Team at their second meeting in St. Vincent on Monday, 24 July.
Dr. the Honourable Ralph Gonsalves, Prime Minister of St. Vincent and the Grenadines, makes a point while addressing members of the Regional Project Team at their second meeting in St. Vincent on Monday, 24 July

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CARICOM takes Single ICT Space, HRD Strategy to UNESCO International Forum in China

Ms. Jennifer Britton Deputy Programme Manager,  ICT for development (ICT4D) speaks at the conference
Ms. Jennifer Britton Deputy Programme Manager, ICT for Development (ICT4D) speaks at the conference

The Caribbean Community (CARICOM) Secretariat participated and presented at the UNESCO International Forum on ICT and Education 2030, held in Quindao, China, July 11-12, 2017.

Representatives from about 80 international and regional agencies participated in the conference.

During the session entitled ‘Promoting Digital Innovations for SDG 4: Global Partnerships’, Ms. Jennifer Britton, Deputy Programme Manager, Information and Communication Technology (ICT) for Development (ICT4D) at the CARICOM Secretariat, said that both the Human Resource Development (HRD) Strategy and the Single ICT space were considered transformative CARICOM inputs to achieving the Sustainable Development Goal (SDG)4 as well as SDGs8 and 9. SDG 4 addresses quality education, while SDGs 8 and 9 focus on decent work and economic growth, and industry, innovation and infrastructure, respectively.


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CCJ seeks to trigger digital revolution in Caribbean courts

Sir Dennis Byron, President of the Caribbean Court of Justice
Sir Dennis Byron, President of the Caribbean Court of Justice

PORT OF SPAIN, Trinidad—The Caribbean Court of Justice (CCJ) is hoping that a set of technological upgrades it recently adopted will trigger a digital revolution in courts across the region, and transform how justice is delivered.

CCJ President Sir Dennis Byron, who spearheaded the Court’s adoption of the new digital platform for document-filing, case management and performance measurement, described the switchover as “a major development for lawyers and courts in the region,” with significant potential to make the delivery of justice more efficient and timely.

Byron explained that the electronic filing of case documents, in particular, would save both time and money for all parties.

“The new system will allow judges direct access to case information from any location, including via their mobile phones. It eliminates the risk of misplaced files and enables lawyers to commence proceedings by filing actions over the Internet,” he said in an interview at the CCJ headquarters in Port of Spain.

Read more at: Dominica News Online

CARICOM Single ICT Space Integrated Work Plan and Budget approved

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Prime Minister of Grenada, Dr. the Rt. Hon. Keith Mitchell  (second from left) announcing the approval of the ICT Integrated Work Plan and Budget. Also in photograph are, from left, CARICOM Secretary-General, Ambassador Irwin LaRocque, President of Guyana, His Excellency David Granger and Prime Minister of Jamaica, the Hon. Andrew Holness
Prime Minister of Grenada, Dr. the Rt. Hon. Keith Mitchell (second from left) announcing the approval of the ICT Integrated Work Plan and Budget. Also in photograph are, from left, CARICOM Secretary-General, Ambassador Irwin LaRocque, President of Guyana, His Excellency David Granger and Prime Minister of Jamaica, the Hon. Andrew Holness

Just five months after signing off on the Vision and Roadmap for the CARICOM Single ICT Space, Heads of Government have signalled that their approval for its Work Plan and Budget. The Single ICT Space represents the digital arm of the CARICOM Single Market and Economy (CSME).


The approval was given at the Thirty-Eighth Regular Meeting of the Conference of Heads of Government that concluded on Thursday evening (6 July, 2017) in St. George’s, Grenada, under the Chairmanship of Dr. the Rt. Hon. Keith Mitchell, Prime Minister of Grenada. Dr. Mitchell holds responsibility for science and technology in the CARICOM Quasi Cabinet.

In recognition of the importance of ICT for the development of any economy, the Heads of Government mandated the development of a CARICOM Single ICT Space. In February, at their Twenty-Eighth Intersessional Meeting in Georgetown, Guyana, they approved the Vision and Roadmap for the Single ICT Space. This decision increased the momentum of the ICT stakeholders to complete another mandate given by the Heads: the finalisation of an integrated work plan and budget for the Single ICT Space. (more…)