Reclaim Is…Islands, Corals, & Nutrients: A view from Barbados

Reclaim Is…Islands, Corals, & Nutrients: A view from Barbados

Blog by Robert Bair.

Considered a Highly Developed Country with one of the highest per capita uses of solar water heaters in the world, Barbados is an island where the Barbados Program of Action was agreed upon by small island states in 1994 as a charge for them to develop sustainably following the RIO Earth Summit. Barbados hosted the 2014 World Environment Day for the United Nations Environment Program (UNEP) (see more UNEP videos here). Programs like the Future Center Trust’s Green Business Barbados are trying to make Barbados more sustainable. Their “Join The Movement” video shares the pressing sustainability concerns of people on the street while “Get Green” summarizes the benefits of going green. Marine Protected Areas PSA 01 are being produced and disseminated locally. Barbados has also been lauded in foreign media for its efforts to be “green.” For example, the Huffington Post published a piece, “Why tiny Barbados is beating us on the road to green energy?”  and Al Jazeera English posted a video, “Barbados Goes Green”.

This week’s Reclaim Is… video, “Nutrient Management in Carlisle Bay Part 1,” stems from a 2014 USF environmental engineering one week field class held in Barbados with partners from the Department of Management Studies and the Student Entrepreneurial Empowerment Development (SEED)​ program at the University of the West Indies. For that class, we learned about sustainable nutrient management and identified potential opportunities for education, research, innovation, and entrepreneurship in Barbados along the lines of this theme. This week’s video describes our study area, Carlisle Bay.  To answer the questions, we recommend that you look at what one employee from the Barbados Water Authority, Mr. Elvin Jordan, does at his home to be more sustainable (click her for video). We also recommend that you read the following Mycoo article, “Sustainable tourism, climate change and sea level rise adaptation policies in Barbados. Natural Resources Forum, Volume 38 (1): 47-57.”

For this week’s “Reclaim Is…” assignment look at the “Nutrient Management in Barbados” video and on the YouTube page (click here to go to it, reply to the following questions that are posted there:

  1. Do you think the water-energy nexus is more apparent to the general public of small island states than it is to those living in larger, continentally bound countries? How do you think this affects personal behavior related to water use/reuse on these islands?
  2. Tourism is a huge industry in many Caribbean islands. As a tourist visiting one of these islands or anywhere else, what impact do you have on the nutrient loads in those places? Are there any things that you can ask for that might improve how nutrients are managed?
  3. What recommendations do you have for us to improve this video?

Stay tuned for Part 2 of “Nutrient Management in Barbados” to learn about the project we hope to work on there based on our field experience.

This is the blog for week 3 of the Spring 2015 “Reclaim Is…” seminar.

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