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IMA > News (Page 4)

Wetland and Water

In Commemoration of World Wetland Day 2021 Prepared by Rahanna JumanInstitute of Marine Affairs We are in a growing water crisis that threatens people and our planet.  Water use has increased six fold over the past century and is rising by about 1% a year. We use more water than nature can replenish, and are destroying the ecosystems that water and all our life depend on most- wetlands. Rincon Lagoon Water covers about 70% of our planet, so we think that it is plentiful. However, freshwater—the stuff we drink and irrigate our farms with—is incredibly rare. Only 3% of the world’s water is freshwater, and two-thirds of that...

UN Decade on Biodiversity (2011-2020) and Our Oceans: Where are we?

In 2010, the United Nations (UN) General Assembly declared the period 2011-2020, as the UN Decade on Biodiversity to promote the implementation of a strategic plan on biodiversity, and its overall vision of living in harmony with nature. The goal was to mainstream and integrate biodiversity conservation in all sectoral plans and policies on a global scale. As we have come to the end of the Decade of Biodiversity, what does this mean for Trinidad and Tobago? It means that Legislative and Policy Reform is now imperative for the following: *Protection of critical fish nursery habitats *Restoration of degraded coastal areas *Conservation of marine ecosystems (coral...

Are you cleaning your toilet bowl correctly?

Prepared by Sheldon Ramoutar, Research Officer (Microbiologist),Institute of Marine Affairs The Christmas holiday is fast approaching and there is no doubt household chores and cleaning will be taking place.  Cleaning can be daunting especially when it comes to the toilet area and bathroom. Though we have been cleaning these surfaces year in and out, have we been cleaning our toilet bowl correctly? Here are a few helpful tips on cleaning your toilet. The Septic Tank The septic tank system is the forgotten household hero. It works hard every day breaking down waste from the toilet using hard-working bacteria. Even though we clean our toilet bowls to get rid...

Mariculture in the Blue Economy: An ocean’s worth of potential for Trinidad and Tobago

Our oceans play a role bigger than most can imagine, from producing over 50% of the air we breathe, to regulating the earth’s climate. It is safe to say that life, as we know it on earth, would not be possible without our oceans. Human civilization has long relied on oceans for transport, trade, extractive resources and as a source of food. However, this reliance has led to environmental degradation and over exploitation of its resources....

The IMA’s Lionfish SeaiTT Mobile App: Marine Conservation in the Palm of Your Hand

by Krystal Ganaselal – Information Officer/Public Relations Citizens with an avid interest in environmental matters will be able to ‘sea’ their environmental reports using mobile technology. The first of its kind in Trinidad and Tobago, the Institute of Marine Affairs’ new Integrated Environmental Incident Software Platform and mobile application, called the Lionfish SeaiTT, allows users to report environmental incidents with the touch of a button. The development of this mobile application was part of a 2014 Green Fund project entitled ‘Control and Management of the Invasive Lionfish in Trinidad and Tobago’ which aimed to raise awareness on the arrival of the marine invasive species, the lionfish,...

Electronic Waste – An emerging Threat to our Marine Environment

By Guischard Charles, Information Officer – Digital Content Specialist In the aftermath of the World Health Organisation (WHO) declaring the dreadful COVID-19 virus a pandemic on the 11, March 2020, information communication technologies and the use of electronic devices and gadgets have skyrocketed in Trinidad and Tobago.  Physical distancing has become the ‘new normal’.   For many of us, online connection and remote work have replaced face-to-face interaction. In an attempt to minimise contagion and the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic, the private sector upgraded online services and rolled out mobile apps to stay connected with their customers and clients, while several government ministries and agencies,...

Why should we be concerned about Nutrient Pollution?

by Yasim Edoo, Associate ProfessionalInstitute of Marine Affairs Many countries around the world are susceptible to different types of pollution. The countries of the Wider Caribbean Region (WCR) are no exception. In recent times, the issue of nutrient pollution has come to the attention of many islands in the WCR and the question of “How can this form of pollution be mitigated?” arises but what is nutrient pollution?  Very simply put, nutrient pollution is the process whereby excess nitrogen and phosphorous compounds (nutrients) enter into water bodies and cause an excessive growth of algae leading to poor condition such as oxygen depletion (National Ocean Service)....

Training Farmers in Caroni One step towards Ecosystem-Based Management in Trinidad and Tobago

Prepared byDr. Darryl Banjoo, Deputy Director (Ag.) and ChemistInstitute of Marine Affairs Training and sensitisation go a long way in changing one’s mindset. Sometimes we do things without knowing the impacts on the environment and on ourselves.  Thirty years ago, farmers would often use agro-chemicals with no special clothing or masks. These chemicals were measured out and mixed by hand in buckets and those same vessels would subsequently be used for drinking water. Spraying of pesticides or weedicides with leaking spray cans that can also come into contact with the skin was common; farmers would simply wipe the chemicals off their skin and drink milk...

CAN YOU LIVE PLASTICS FREE?

By Aleisha Dennie, Research Staff Institute of Marine Affairs It is said that human beings have a complex relationship with our natural environment. We have become masters of exploiting our resources to the benefit of our social and economic well being. Food, fiber, biomass fuel, medicine, freshwater all derived from the earth’s bounty. It is a troubling notion though, that this supply is being threatened with every passing generation. Plastic is one of the major pollutants found in our environment to date. Improper disposal of plastic waste has led to the destruction of the aesthetic beauty of tourist destinations, the entanglement and suffocation of marine organisms...

Rethinking the Oceans: Transitioning to the Blue Economy

Farahnaz N. Solomon (PhD)Research Officer , Institute of Marine Affairs “There are more opportunities in the ocean than we can fathom”. Oceans cover 72% of the Earth’s surface. They support life by generating oxygen, absorbing carbon dioxide, recycling nutrients and regulating global climate and temperature. Oceans are important for fisheries, transport, and tourism – all traditional sectors of the Blue Economy. Highlighted at the 2012 Rio +20 Conference, the Blue Economy can be defined as 'the sustainable use of ocean resources for economic growth, improved livelihoods and jobs, while preserving the health of the marine and coastal environment'(1). Using the sea for economic gain is not a...