Friday, 25 March 2016

The National Ozone Unit (NOU) tasked with the implementation and roll out of the National Hydrofluorocarbon (HCFC) Phase-out Management Plan (HPMP) continued its efforts to support the refrigeration and air-conditioning (RAC) sector and the public to use alternatives and adopt ozone friendly practices. Over the period January - March, 2016, these activities included:  
  •  Technology transfer: The NOU distributed hydrocarbon leak detectors to local air condition and refrigeration technicians. Hydrocarbon has been identified as a viable alternative to the ozone depleting refigerant; HCFCs in the RAC sector. 
  •  Regulation of HCFCs: In accordance with the HPMP, quotas were given to eleven (11) local companies to import the R22, R123 refrigerants and their blends. By law, all imports of refrigerant and equipment containing refrigerant require a license from the Trade Licensing Unit of the Ministry of Trade and Industry.
  • Training: The United Nations Environment Programme Regional Office for Latin America and the Caribbean (UNEP ROLAC) conducted a mission to Trinidad and Tobago. This mission was to facilitate a project which included a training session designed to encourage the use of alternatives to methyl bromide (MB) in this country, and to strengthen the capacity of the fumigation sector to use these alternatives.
  • School Awareness Programme: the NOU in an effort to sensitise the public about the ozone layer, its depletion and current initiatives of the NOU as well as how to protect themselves against UV rays, participated in environmental events in schools specifically the Bishop Anstey High School and Trinity East High School's Sustainability Fair and the University of the West Indies (UWI) Primary School's Materials and Energy Conservation Day. In addition, the NOU conducted sensitisation sessions at ASJA Girls and Bishop Anstey High School, Port of Spain.

NOU Staff engage with students at the Bishop Anstey and Trinity East  Sustainability Fair 

Children of the UWI Primary School thoroughly engrossed in with the presentation by the NOU/EPPD staff.

Ms. Neera Singh,  Ozone Assistant, with students of ASJA Girls after  her presentation on ozone depletion.

For more information on the NOU's activities, visit

Wednesday, 23 March 2016

Monitoring and Evaluation Instrument Training Workshop

The Monitoring and Evaluation Instrument (MEI) Training Workshop - The Implementation Plan to the Regional Framework for Achieving Development Resilient to Climate Change was held at the Civil Aviation Authority, Piarco during the period March 21-22, 2016.

The Workshop was facilitated by the Caribbean Community Climate Change Centre (CCCCC) in collaboration with the Multilateral Environmental Agreements Unit (MEAU) of the Ministry of Planning and Development. Ms. Heather Johnson of the CCCCC was the chief facilitator for the duration of the 2 day workshop. Attendees included officers from various Government Ministries and Agencies as well as NGOs (see pictures below).

 The Workshop comprised of:
  • An open session: this set the stage for participants, providing them with a background and context as well as expected outcomes and areas to be covered over the duration of the Workshop. 
  • Activity 1: this was facilitated by Ms. Johnson and dealt with validating the National Monitoring and Evaluation (M&E) Framework for Trinidad and Tobago. Therefore, participants had the opportunity to review the Framework developed. As part of the validation process, they were also able to revise, update or add/remove indicators as well as set/refine targets for all indicators developed. For all these, a baseline was sought, if possible.
  • Activity 2: this began on Day 2 and its objective was to provide hands on training to stakeholders in using the M&E Instrument online tool. The training comprised of 2 modules "LimeSurvey" - a popular open source software to build online surveys and the "Report and Administrative Module" - a tool to design and build M&E reporting.  This helped participants get familiar with the online tool questionnaire and M&E reporting.
  • Activity 3: this involved practical exercises using the tool and database including demonstration of the steps required for designing and building an online survey, mapping new indicators to the existing National M&E and compiling regional and national reports to be done.
  • Activity 4: this was completed during the evening session of Day 2 and its objective was to guide national stakeholders on the effective application and management of the M&E Instrument. The session discussed the roles and responsibilities for implementation and management, in particular provided guidelines for National Climate Change Focal Points on how to complete their respective online surveys. Participants learned steps to expand and update the M&E Instrument taking into consideration changing contexts.


Monday, 7 March 2016

GEF Ecpanded Facility Workshop - Caribbean

During the period of March 1-4, 2016 the Global Environment Facility - Expanded Constituency Workshop (GEF-GCW) was conducted at the Radisson Hotel, Port-of-Spain. There were over 130 registered participants and facilitators at the Workshop. Its intention was to enrich the GEF focal points and other key stakeholders, including civil society, through information sharing and training as well as discussions that will contribute to the shaping of GEF-7 (seventh replenishment of the Global Environment Facility Trust Fund).

Day 1 (March 1st) concentrated on CSO consultations in the morning while the afternoon period focused on consultations with GEF Small Grants Programme (Trinidad and Tobago) as well as CSOs, the operational focal (Environmental Management Authority) and the Political Focal Point (Ministry of Planning and Development). Mr. Kishan Kumarsingh (Head, Multilateral Environmental Agreements Unit) and Mr. Javed Lakhan (Environmental Policy Analyst) represented the Ministry of Planning and Development at these sessions.
On March 2nd and 3rd (Day 2), GEF focal points, focal points from the main Conventions (Biodiversity, Land Degradation, Climate Change and Persistent Organic Pollutants), representatives from civil society and representatives from the GEF Secretariat and the GEF Agencies met with colleagues from other countries in the region, and other GEF partners to discuss and review policies and procedures, to share lessons and experiences from the development and implementation of GEF projects and their  integration within national policy frameworks. Staff of the Environmental Policy and Planning Division who follow MEA matters represented the Ministry of Planning and Development at these sessions.

Staff of the EPPD and other delegates from Trinidad and Tobago.

The Workshop included an insightful day of training from the United Nations Office for Project Services (UNOPS) on Project Management; as well as providing information on Knowledge Management, and how GEF projects support the Sustainable Development Goals, Monitoring and Evaluation and Results-based management.

Day 3 Team including Ms. Amoroso (EPPD) after completing their Project Management exercise from UNOPS.
The final day of the Workshop consisted of a site visit to a past recipient of the GEF-Small Grants Programme (GEF-SGP) in Trinidad, the Asa Wright Nature Centre (AWNC). The day’s activities included welcome remarks and a presentation of the AWNC GEF-SGP’s project, along with an interactive Nature Walk with participatory activities highlighting key ideas and concepts in Knowledge Management and Project Management.  

Opening remarks from GEF at the start of Day 4 at the AWNC

Participatory activities based on the principles of Project Management as delegates tour GEF SGP grant recepient AWNC.