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Jamaica to host regional sargassum forum

Published:Thursday | July 25, 2019 | 9:45 AM
A man clearing sargassum seaweed from a section of the Sugarman's Beach in Portmore, St Catherine - Ricardo Makyn photo.

In light of the influx of sargassum in the Caribbean region, Jamaica will host a regional forum to facilitate collaboration on how to address the issue.

The forum, which is being spearheaded by the Global Tourism Resilience and Crisis Management Centre, will be held at the Regional Headquarters of the University of the West Indies, Mona tomorrow, Friday July 26.

READ: Sun, seas and sargassum

The objective of the forum is to share knowledge and best practices as it relates to sargassum, specifically the type which originates from the coast of Brazil.

The outcome from the forum will be to identify gaps and foster synergies towards a solution.

“Jamaica is taking the lead on this critical issue of preventing sargassum from negatively impacting our beaches which will ultimately, negatively impact our tourism. We are being proactive as the onset of sargassum poses a real threat to not just Jamaica but the entire region that is so heavily dependent on tourism,” said Tourism Minister, Ed Bartlett, in highlighting the importance of finding effective solutions to the sargassum issue.

Sargassum is a type of brown seaweed and numerous species are distributed throughout the temperate and tropical oceans of the world, where they inhabit shallow water and coral reefs.

It often causes a foul odour, releasing fumes of sulphur compounds that rust metals, and damage modern conveniences.

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