Waste Management Conference led to ‘Action Plan’ for the Caribbean

July 4-6, Jamaica Conference Centre

UN Environment, in collaboration with the Government of Jamaica and the Government of The Netherlands, hosted several regional, international and local stakeholders at a three-day Caribbean Waste Management Conference. The goal was to develop an action plan which will tackle waste management issues in Small Island Developing States (SIDS) the Caribbean region.

The conference, themed “SIDS Approaches to Waste and the Circular Economy”, drew on the experience of the participants and resulted in a Guide to Best Practice for the Caribbean;  a strategy document and call to action which will inform government and public-sector partnerships in solving the issue of waste management in Caribbean countries.

The conference also acted as a launching pad for the unveiling of a US$700K plastics waste management project which the Government of Jamaica is conducting with the support of UN Environment and its International Environmental Technology Centre, based in Japan.


Speaker 1, Hon Daryl Vaz, Minister without portfolio, Ministry of Economic Growth & Job Creation, Jamaica

Speaker 2, Arthur Eijs, Policy Advisor, Department of International Affairs,  Ministry of Infrastructure and the Environment, Government of the Netherlands

Speaker 3, Patricia Aquing, Executive Director, Caribbean Water & Wastewater Association

Speaker 4, Vincent Sweeney, Head, Caribbean Sub-Regional Office, UN Environment (UNEP)

Vincent Sweeney, Head of the UN Environment Caribbean Sub-Regional Office said that the conference was "to bring globally and regionally recognised speakers and allow individuals from different walks of life to share experiences, network and plan." Time was allocated to ensure that effective networking took place, everyone’s ideas were shared and contributions that can be adapted to local circumstances and cultures were made.

According to Mr. Sweeney, "waste management, including plastics is very much on the global agenda and we need to find Caribbean solutions. Bringing together regional and international experts allows us to find the right approaches for our Caribbean needs".

The outcome of this conference also serves as an opportunity to raise the specific needs of the Caribbean SIDS at the upcoming UN Environment Assembly, the world's highest-level decision-making body on the environment, which will gather in Nairobi, Kenya, from 4-6 December 2017 under the overarching theme of pollution.

Download the conference report

For further information, please contact: Deonne Smith, Communications and Partnership Officer, UN Environment Caribbean Sub-Regional Office, deonne.smith@unep.org, +876 922 9267-69