Wednesday, January 17, 2018

First Regional Workshop held at Maritime Technology Cooperation Centre Caribbean (MTCC Caribbean)

Regional and local maritime stakeholders, MTCC Caribbean Team and IMO representatives who participated in the First National Workshop of the MTCC Caribbean at The University of Trinidad and Tobago, Chaguaramas Campus.

The Maritime Technology Cooperation Centre Caribbean (MTCC Caribbean) hosted its first Regional Workshop on June 28th and 29th, 2017 at The University of Trinidad and Tobago, Chaguaramas Campus and brought together Senior Maritime Administrators, Legal Officers and Technical Specialists from thirteen (13) Caribbean islands including Trinidad and Tobago. The MTCC Caribbean is one of five MTCCs established under the Global MTCC Network (GMN) project which is funded by the European Union (EU) and implemented by the International Maritime Organization (IMO), and is hosted by The University of Trinidad and Tobago (UTT). The other four centers are located in Asia, Africa, the Pacific, and Latin America. These 5 MTCCs form a global network for Capacity building for Climate Mitigation in the Maritime Shipping Industry.

The First Regional Workshop was opened by Mrs. Vivian Rambarath-Parasram, Director and Head of the MTCC Caribbean and also Overall Programme Leader of Maritime Programmes at The University of Trinidad and Tobago. She urged the participants to take advantage of the opportunity provided through the MTCC Caribbean, to undertake an introspective assessment of their responsibilities with respect to climate mitigation in the maritime sector, consider our international obligations, human resource and physical infrastructural requirements, and exchange relevant information. Mr. Anton Rhodes of the GMN Project Coordination Unit of the IMO, brought greetings on behalf of the IMO and reiterated the need for the reduction in greenhouse gas emissions from the global maritime sector. He also congratulated the MTCC Caribbean on the excellent performance thus far and for hosting the First Regional Workshop under the GMN Project. Mrs. Natasha Helena-Zoric, Project Officer of the European Union (EU) delegation to Trinidad and Tobago, represented the EU as the funding organization and stressed the importance of efforts to mitigate climate change. She also highlighted the EU’s commitment to funding environmental and climate change initiatives, among others, within the Caribbean region. Professor Clement Imbert, Deputy Chairman of the Board of Governors, UTT welcomed the participants and Professor Dyer Narinesingh, President of UTT offered thanks and closing remarks at the end of the opening ceremony. Mr Ronald Alfred, Director of Maritime Services Division in the Ministry of Works and Transport, also brought remarks as a key stakeholder of the MTCC Caribbean. Mr. Rodolfo Sabonge, Head of the MTCC Latin America as well as Kriztel Flores, Administrative Assistant and Yolanda Oglivie, Administrative and Finance Director were also present at the workshop.

The workshop was successful in achieving its aims by providing in depth knowledge to the regional and local participants on the objectives of the GMN Project and the MTCC Caribbean. The participants determined both national and sub-regional priorities for implementing MARPOL Annex VI and the technical experts from the MTCC Caribbean team delivered guidance on importance and calculation of Energy Efficiency Design Indices (EEDI), Shipboard Energy Efficiency Management Plan (SEEMP) and Energy Efficiency Operational Indicator (EEOI), the global Climate Change mitigation framework, MTCC Caribbean pilot projects and the Data Capture and reporting mechanisms. The Trinidad and Tobago Pilots Association and the Maritime Services division, also presented on their roles as key stakeholders within the local sector and the role that similar stakeholders can play within the region in providing support for the realisation of the MTCC Caribbean objectives.

The workshop included demonstrations in the Full mission Bridge and Engine Room simulators to show how different operational measures and uptake methods could reduce fuel consumption and greenhouse gas emissions into the environment and also increase the cost efficiency of operating vessels. Terms of reference were adopted for a Regional Steering Committee (RSC), to be composed of regional and local stakeholders and MTCC Caribbean Team members. The RSC will assist the MTCC Caribbean by acting as champions for implementation of its objectives in order to increase energy efficiency and reduce greenhouse gas emissions in the regional maritime shipping sector. This workshop also starts a series of sub-regional workshops across the Caribbean, which will continue to promote and ensure implementation of these methods and technologies, as well as gather data to fuel further research in this area.