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Belize strengthens oil spill response readiness with national workshop

Posted: Wednesday, March 13, 2024. 7:53 am CST.

By Horace Palacio: In an effort to bolster preparedness for potential oil spill incidents, a national workshop on oil spill response is currently underway in Belmopan, Belize. The four-day workshop (March 12-15) brings together 48 participants from the Belize government to enhance their capacity to address this environmental threat.

The workshop focuses on understanding the devastating impacts of oil pollution on the marine environment, emphasizing the need for rapid decision-making and effective collaboration between national agencies, regional partners, and the international community.

Participants are engaging in lectures and case studies covering:

  • Response strategies and techniques
  • The behavior and effects of spilled oil
  • Response management structures
  • Roles and responsibilities
  • International cooperation mechanisms
  • Regulations, conventions, liability, and compensation

The workshop aims to equip participants with the necessary knowledge to plan effectively and execute a safe, efficient oil spill clean-up operation. Emphasis is placed on building strong networks and collaboration between stakeholders for a unified response effort.

This initiative is led by experts from the Regional Marine Pollution Emergency, Information, and Training Centre-Caribe (RAC/REMPEITC-Caribe) and the International Maritime Organization’s Integrated Technical Cooperation Programme (ITCP). Collaboration with the Belize Department of the Environment and Belize Port Authority ensures that the national context is considered.

RAC/REMPEITC-Caribe, hosted by the Government of Curaçao, assists countries in implementing international conventions that protect against ship-based pollution. Funding from organizations like IMO, UNEP, and the UNDP supports its important work.


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