Environment Ministry to expand air quality monitoring programme
The Environment Ministry is to expand its programme of monitoring of air quality across the island.
Environment Minister Robert Pickersgill says Mandeville in Manchester and Spanish Town and Portmore in St Catherine are to be included in the government’s air quality monitoring network.
Pickersgill, who was making his contribution to the Sectoral Debate in the House of Representatives yesterday, said currently emissions over Kingston, Montego Bay in St James and May Pen in Clarendon are monitored.
He says the increased monitoring of air quality will allow the country to track and control emissions as Jamaica seeks to tackle issues surrounding climate change.
Recently, there have been renewed calls for better and more frequent air quality monitoring to reduce the impact of health hazards.
The calls came during the massive fire at the Riverton disposal site in St Andrew in March which saw the release of high levels of hazardous substances in the air including, cancer-causing benzene.
Meanwhile, the environment minister says there are plans to promulgate regulations to govern Environmental Impact Assessments and protected areas during this financial year.
Pickergill also says there are plans to increase fines for breaches.