Jamaica Observer http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/ JamaicaObserver.com, the most concise and in-depth website for news coverage on Jamaica and the Caribbean. Updated daily 7 days a week, 24 hours a day en-us copyright Jamaica Observer, 2011 Electric vehicles a better bet than diesel and gas http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/environment/Electric-vehicles-a-better-bet-than-diesel-and-gas_93951 Part five of an eight-part look at the pace and future of renewable technologies Local Environment Wed, 29 Mar 2017 00:00:00 GMT Nuh Dutty Up Jamaica expands http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/environment/Nuh-Dutty-Up-Jamaica-expands_93980 In February 2015, a catchy jingle hit the airwaves. “Nuh dutty up Jamaica, please don’t dweet” it went, urging people not to litter. Local Environment Wed, 29 Mar 2017 00:00:00 GMT Wigton to offer renewable energy training course in April http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/environment/Wigton-to-offer-renewable-energy-training-course-in-April_93802 Registration is now open for a certificate course in solar thermal technologies at Wigton Renewable Energy Training Lab in Rose Hill, Manchester, from April 5-7, 2017. Local Environment Wed, 29 Mar 2017 00:00:00 GMT NEPA continues to urge fire prevention http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/environment/NEPA-continues-to-urge-fire-prevention_93525 In 2015, a devastating series of bush fires swept across several communities in East Rural St Andrew, causing significant damage to the livelihoods of farmers and their families. Local Environment Mon, 27 Mar 2017 02:00:00 GMT Flexpak Goes Green http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/environment/Flexpak-Goes-Green_93158 Flexpak Local Environment Wed, 22 Mar 2017 00:00:00 GMT Imported fuels driving Jamaica to financial ruin? http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/environment/Imported-fuels-driving-Jamaica-to-financial-ruin-_93159 Seeing is believing. If I tell you how big an impact imported fuels make on the country’s wealth you will doubt me, and therefore not make the effort to act on it. Local Environment Wed, 22 Mar 2017 00:00:00 GMT Jamaicans stand to profit from collective financing http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/environment/Jamaicans-stand-to-profit-from-collective-financing-of-wind-and-solar-projects_92511 We saw in last Wednesday’s article, entitled ‘When will JPS prices drop by more than half?’, that we could have much cheaper power if utility provider Jamaica Public Service (JPS) switches to wind and solar energy coupled with pumped hydro storage, displacing onerous and expensive foreign fuel imports. By having the finances ready and upfront for this coupling, we could have this entire low-priced electricity transformation done in less than three years to full operation. Otherwise, it will take us much longer than 10 years. Local Environment Wed, 15 Mar 2017 02:00:00 GMT Dancers off to New York http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/environment/Dancers-off-to-New-York_91989 Two Jamaican dancers, Ashley Bromfield and Oraine Frater, will participate in a summer intensive programme organised by New York-based Complexions Contemporary Ballet. Local Environmental Fri, 10 Mar 2017 03:00:00 GMT When will JPS prices drop by more than half? http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/environment/When-will-JPS-prices-drop-by-more-than-half--_91155 Energy choice is driven by price, no matter where in the world you are. It matters little to the public what type of technology is used to power their homes or the vehicle they drive. What drives their decision is the answer to this question: “How cheap can I get it?” Local Environment Wed, 08 Mar 2017 00:00:00 GMT Fishers to get bad-weather warning app http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/environment/Fishers-to-get-bad-weather-warning-app_91254 Fisherfolk in four Caribbean countries are shortly to be equipped with an early warning and emergency response tool in an effort to save their lives and property in circumstances of rough weather and sea conditions. Local Environment Wed, 08 Mar 2017 00:00:00 GMT Researchers call for protection of Caribbean ‘supersites’ to restore ocean ecosystem http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/environment/Researchers-call-for-protection-of-Caribbean----supersites----to-restore-ocean-ecosystem-------_91206 NORTH CAROLINA, USA (CMC) — Researchers at the University of North Carolina (UNC) at Chapel Hill have called for the protection of Caribbean coral reefs , known as “supersites”, in order to restore the environmental and economic setback that has been inflicted by overfishing. Local News Fri, 03 Mar 2017 00:00:00 GMT Making the case for utility-sized solar generation http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/environment/Making-the-case-for-utility-sized-solar-generation_90989 To observers, like myself, who track the advance of new technologies, the importance of them attaining one per cent and two per cent of global markets become critical focal points to watch. Once a new technology grows to be above one per cent of global sales, it is no longer considered to be a niche product, but becomes a mainstream product instead, near impossible to be annihilated. When these new products or technologies grow above two per cent, it signals they are big threats to the established older products. Local Environment Wed, 01 Mar 2017 00:00:00 GMT UTech to introduce climate change degree http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/environment/UTech-to-introduce-climate-change-degree_91034 The University of Technology, Jamaica, through its Caribbean Sustainable Energy and Innovatio Local Environment Wed, 01 Mar 2017 00:00:00 GMT ZooCycle http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/environment/ZooCycle_89609 When Hope Zoo increased its entrance fees by over 200 per cent three years ago, it attracted public backlash for the hike. Local Environment Wed, 01 Mar 2017 00:00:00 GMT Dredging of Kingston Harbour begins http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/environment/Dredging-of-Kingston-Harbour-begins_90328 Seven weeks into the dredging of Port Bustamante in the Kingston Harbour to facilitate larger ships coming through the Panama Canal, the company contracted to do the excavation is reporting that there are “no visible impacts” on fishing beaches in proximity to the operation sites. Local Environment Wed, 22 Feb 2017 00:00:00 GMT Wisynco launches biodegradable foam http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/environment/Wisynco-launches-biodegradable-foam_89690 IT has been said that polystyrene foam, better known as styrofoam, cannot biodegrade. Local News Thu, 16 Feb 2017 00:00:00 GMT PHOTO: Faking death? http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/environment/Faking-death-_89665 It was not clear if this reptile, spotted yesterday afloat on its back in a swamp near the St Thomas main road, which leads into Hector’s River, Portland, was dead or just faking it. (Photo: Kenyon Hemans) Local News Thu, 16 Feb 2017 00:00:00 GMT Rescuers form human chain to save whales http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/environment/Rescuers-form-human-chain-to-save-whales_89516 GOLDEN BAY, New Zealand (AFP) — It was a scene of both tragedy and triumph in New Zealand Saturday as rescuers defied a shark threat and formed a human chain in a bay in a bid to keep another 200 whales from becoming stranded a day after hundreds died in a mass beaching. Local Environment Wed, 15 Feb 2017 00:00:00 GMT Wisynco to introduce biodegradable foam product today http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/environment/Wisynco-to-introduce-biodegradable-foam-product-today_89587 Local manufacturers of the Sweet line of synthetic packaging products, Wisynco Limited, is today expected to announce a major shift in its operations — a move away from polystyrene-only food containers to a biodegradable alternative it has branded eco-foam. Local Environment Wed, 15 Feb 2017 00:00:00 GMT Montego Bay Marine Park, Sandals Foundation plant mangroves for World Wetlands Day http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/environment/Montego-Bay-Marine-Park--Sandals-Foundation-plant-mangroves-for-World-Wetlands-Day_88882 MONTEGO BAY, St James — In recognition of World Wetlands Day last Thursday, February 2, Sandals Foundatioon launched an awareness campaign across the Caribbean to educate students and community members on the importance of preserving wetlands. Sandals Foundation team members in the islands of Antigua, The Bahamas, Barbados, Grenada, St Lucia, Jamaica, and the Turks & Caicos organised school field trips to give students a hands-on opportunity to observe the wetlands. They also hosted competitions and expositions within the schools to educate students on the multiple roles of wetlands in the Caribbean. Local Environment Wed, 08 Feb 2017 00:00:00 GMT Forestry Department urges protection http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/environment/Forestry-Department-urges-protection_88857 The Forestry Department has given a frightening report on the state of the island’s swamps — low-lying forested areas that are flooded either seasonally or permanently with freshwater — announcing last week that only 4.5 per cent of them remain in tact. Local Environment Wed, 08 Feb 2017 00:00:00 GMT 4 irrefutable truths about climate change science http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/environment/4-irrefutable-truths-about-climate-change-science_88211 During the recent confirmation hearings of President Trump’s Cabinet nominees, a familiar pattern has emerged. Many of them have acknowledged that climate change is happening, but each has sowed doubt by either understating the connection between human activity and climate change or by suggesting that there’s too much uncertainty to act. The overall effect of these statements is to confuse or stall progress. Local Environment Wed, 01 Feb 2017 00:00:00 GMT EFJ awards $85 million for climate change projects http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/environment/EFJ-awards--85-million-for-climate-change-projects_88205 Eighteen civil society organisations on Monday received a combined total of $85 million to implement climate change adaptation and resilience-building projects in communities across the island. Local Environment Wed, 01 Feb 2017 00:00:00 GMT