Coastal erosion posing threat to Caribbean tourism


A report by Darlisa Ghouralal for T&T’s Loop.

With coastal erosion threatening to affect the 14.5 percent of annual GDP contributed by tourism, the Caribbean Sea Commission (CSC) of the Association of Caribbean States (ACS) has taken action to preserve Caribbean coastlines.

The Sandy Shorelines coastal erosion project was launched on Friday, which is being funded through a partnership with the Korean International Cooperation Agency (KOICA), which has injected $4 million into the project.

The Agency is also providing technical expertise.

The governments of the Republic of Turkey and the Kingdom of the Netherlands are also collaborating on the project, while Cuba’s Ministry of Science, Technology and the Environment (CITMA), a long-established leader in coastal erosion research regionally, is at the technical helm of the project.

ACS Secretary General Dr. June Soomer said the project is timely as the most precious resources of the region being consumed and washed away, and the problem worsening daily.

Ambassador to Trinidad and Tobago Doo-Young Lee added that the project is a milestone for Korea to maintain constructive engagement with its Caribbean counterparts.

He said the Caribbean region is especially vulnerable to climate change and the project will contribute to informing the resilience of coastal communities to climate change.

The Caribbean Sea Commission is the body within the ACS charged with the preservation of the Caribbean Sea, working mainly through multi-country cooperative projects for Caribbean Sea preservation.

It is also lobbying the United Nations for special area status designation for the Caribbean Sea.

Researchers estimate that a one-metre level in sea rise could inundate a total of 21 out of 64 airports in CARICOM States, 29 percent of the major hotel resorts and displace an estimated 110,000 people in CARICOM nations.

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