Flexpak Goes Green

Flexpak Limited Technical Director Nigel Hoyow (left) shows Senator Matthew Samuda an example of the company’s biodegradable plastic bags during a tour of the facility last week. (karl Mclarty)

Flexpak Limited, a major player in the manufacturing of plastic packagaging in Jamaica, last week unveiled a line of oxo-biodegradable plastic bags at its head-quarters in Twickenham Park, St Catherine. “We think we have found a solution for plastic bags not to be a major problem in this co ... Read More

Jamaica transfers out some US$3.6 billion annually for fuel. (Chad McDermott) Imported fuels driving Jamaica to financial ruin?
Seeing is believing. If I tell you how big an impact imported fuels make on the country’s weal ... Read More

Solar plants, like this one in Serpa, Portugal, will coninue to dominate the energy landscape as they increasingly require smaller installation spaces and use technologies that extend their usefulness into the night.. Jamaicans stand to profit from collective financing
We saw in last Wednesday’s article, entitled ‘When will JPS prices drop by more than hal ... Read More

Oraine Frater(Photo: Kenyan Hemans) Dancers off to New York
Two Jamaican dancers, Ashley Bromfield and Oraine Frater, will participate in a summer intensive pro ... Read More

When will JPS prices drop by more than half?

David Cooke | Wednesday, March 08, 2017    

Prime Minister Andrew Holness looks at a substation at Wigton III, a 24-megawatt expansion of the  wind farm in Rose Hill, Manchester, following the official opening of the facility yesterday. The wind farm is expected to generate 63,072 megawatt hours of energy annually and will reduce oil consumption by 37,000 barrels per year. This will save Jamaica over $230 million.Photo: JIS

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?” To that end, there are several developments on the local scene that are indeed worthy of note. The new BMR-owned 36-MW wind farm at Malvern, St Elizabeth, is producing energy for US$0.13 per Kwh at fixed prices to Ja ... Read More

Fishers to get bad-weather warning app

Wednesday, March 08, 2017    

The Statistical Institute of Jamaica says agriculture, forestry and fishing saw growth of 29.1 per cent.

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. The solution is a mobile phone app which is being developed by the ICT4Fisheries Consortium in collaboration with the Caribbean Regional Fisheries Mechanism (CRFM) under the Caribbean Regional Track of the Pilot Programme for Climate Resilience (PPCR). It will work to reduce risks ... Read More

Researchers call for protection of Caribbean ‘supersites’ to restore ocean ecosystem

Friday, March 03, 2017    

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. The report, published in the March 1 issue of the journal Science Advances, noted that up to 90 per cent of predatory fish are gone from Caribbean coral reefs, straining the ocean ecosystem and coastal ec ... Read More

Making the case for utility-sized solar generation

David Cooke | Wednesday, March 01, 2017    

Solar plants, like this one in Serpa, Portugal, will coninue to dominate the energy landscape as they increasingly require smaller installation spaces and use technologies that extend their usefulness into the night..

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 establish ... Read More

UTech to introduce climate change degree

Wednesday, March 01, 2017    

Entrance to the UTech, Jamaica, main campus (UTech)

The University of Technology, Jamaica, through its Caribbean Sustainable Energy and Innovatio n Institute and the Faculty of The Built Environment (FOBE)will on Thursday launch a multidisciplinary Master of Science Degree in Sustainable Energy and Climate Change. The university said the programme “is in response to the need for tertiary level training of specialists in the areas of sustainable energy and climate change, and has a strong focus on sustainable energy, entrepreneurship and g ... Read More


Wednesday, March 01, 2017    

Guardsman has upgraded the Hope Zoo in Kingston

When Hope Zoo increased its entrance fees by over 200 per cent three years ago, it attracted public backlash for the hike. But the facility, which is home to 63 species of animals as per its website, is currently offering to cut the rates in half...but only in exchange for recyclable plastic bottles. Under a programme dubbed ZooCycle, which is designed to foster the habit of recycling in children, the zoo is slashing its entrance fee for children (age three to 11) from from $1,000 to $500 onc ... Read More

Dredging of Kingston Harbour begins

Wednesday, February 22, 2017    

Minister with oversight responsibility for water, works and housing in the Ministry of Economic Growth and Job Creation Dr Horace Chang (left) and CEO of Kingston Freeport Terminal Limited Olivier Tretout look at sludge dredged from the seafloor at  Port Bustamante, yesterday. (Michael Gordon)

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. Using a trailing suction hopper dredger with a capacity of 14,000 cubic metres, Sodraco has so far been removing soft material — clay, silt and some sand — and dumping it some 15 miles south-we ... Read More

Wisynco launches biodegradable foam

BY KIMONE THOMPSON Associate editor — features thompsonk@jamaicaobserver.com | Thursday, February 16, 2017    

President of ECM BioFilms Robert Sinclair (right), pours some of his company’s masterbatch pellets into WIlliam Mahfood’s palm. Mahfood is chairman of the Wisynco Group, which announced yesterday that it is now including the pellets in its polystyrene foam production process in order to make the finished product biodegradable. Observing Sinclair and Mahfood are Government senator Matthew Samuda(second left) and Wisynco’s director of manufacturing Devon Reynolds. (Photos: Garfield Robinson)

IT has been said that polystyrene foam, better known as styrofoam, cannot biodegrade. Well, apparently that’s old technology. Faced with overflowing landfills and growing criticisms about poor solid waste management, business interests and governments worldwide have been trying to find ways to make the material — a durable, lightweight, and cheaply produced option widely used as disposable food containers — more environmentally friendly. Substitute material ranging from milk p ... Read More

PHOTO: Faking death?

Thursday, February 16, 2017    

Photo: Kenyon Hemans

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) Read More

Rescuers form human chain to save whales

Wednesday, February 15, 2017    

Hundreds of pilot whales lay stranded at Farewell Spit near Nelson, New Zealand, Friday, February 10, after beaching themselves. (Photo: AFP/Tim Cuff)

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. About 150 people waded out up to their necks at Farewell Spit in the north-west of the South Island to form the human wall as they also guided some 100 survivors from Friday’s beaching away from the shore. Environm ... Read More



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