Wed | Oct 4, 2023


Published:Sunday | June 4, 2023 | 2:15 AM

Negotiators from around the world gathered at UNESCO in Paris last month for a second round of talks aim towards a global treaty on fighting plastic pollution in 2024.
Negotiators from around the world gathered at UNESCO in Paris last month for a second round of talks aim towards a global treaty on fighting plastic pollution in 2024.

New treaty to be crafted to end global plastics pollution

PARIS (AP) — Global negotiators have agreed to craft a draft treaty to end plastics pollution, a preliminary but crucial step towards tackling one of the most lasting sources of human waste.

Environmental advocates cautiously welcomed the outcome of five days of United Nations talks in Paris on plastics pollution but expressed concern that the petroleum industry and some governments would water down the eventual treaty. Most plastic is made from fossil fuels.

Delegates at the Intergovernmental Negotiating Committee for Plastics agreed on Friday evening to produce an initial draft before their next meeting in Kenya in November, participants said.

The committee is charged with developing the first international, legally binding treaty on plastics pollution, on land and at sea.

A coalition of “high-ambition” governments led by Norway and Rwanda, along with environmental groups, want to end plastics pollution altogether by 2040 by slashing production and limiting some chemicals used in making plastics.

“Projections suggest that a child born today will see plastic production double by the time they turn 18, but we know that the consequences of increasing plastics production will be disastrous for our health, the planet, and the climate,” said Dr Tadesse Amera, who led the International Pollutants Elimination Network’s delegation at the talks. “The stakes are high, but we are optimistic by the growing awareness among delegates of the need for global controls.”

Countries with big petroleum industries like the US, China and Saudi Arabia are focusing instead on plastic recycling, and want country-by-country rules instead of across-the-board limits.


Three men killed in Frankfield, Clarendon

Three men were murdered in Grantham district in Frankfield, Clarendon, on Friday night.

The deceased have been identified as 42-year-old Kelvin Anderson, a truck operator of Grantham district; 56-year-old Delroy Facey, a farmer of Belmont district in Frankfield; and Cecil Ricketts.

The Frankfield police report that about 9:30 p.m., the men were at a shop in the community having drinks when a vehicle drove up.

Men exited the car and opened gunfire hitting all three, killing them on the spot.

The Frankfield police were called to the scene.


Man accused of injuring infant during domestic dispute gets $300,000 bail

A St Catherine man charged in relation to the injury of a six-month-old baby during a domestic dispute with the child’s mother was granted $300,000 bail with surety in the parish court on Friday.

Twenty-eight-year-old security guard Shaquille Daley, who is charged with assault occasioning bodily harm and unauthorised possession of ammunition, was ordered by Senior Parish Court Judge, Desiree Alleyne, to report to the Portmore police on Mondays.

He was also ordered to stay away from the child and the child’s mother.

Daley, who is being represented by attorney-at-law Alexander Shaw, was ordered to return to court on July 14.

In applying for bail, Shaw accused the child’s mother of being malicious and mendacious.

He further argued that it was his client who was attacked by the woman and that it was during the ordeal that the infant sustained injuries.

Allegations are that about 8:30 a.m. on May 25, the woman, her child, and the accused were at home in Greater Portmore when an argument developed.

The accused and the child’s mother are relatives.

It is being alleged that the man attempted to slap the woman, who was holding the child, but the infant was instead hit.

It is further alleged that the woman chased the accused and the man reportedly used a garbage bin to hit her, with the baby, who was still in the woman’s hands, being hit.

The child reportedly sustained injuries and was taken to the doctor.

The matter was reported to the police and an investigation resulted in the man being arrested.

While being processed at the Portmore Police lock-up, a nine-millimetre round of ammunition was reportedly found in his pants pocket.

He was charged with unauthorised possession of ammunition and assault occasioning bodily harm.


Health ministry steps up immunisation against vaccine-preventable diseases

The Ministry of Health & Wellness is stepping up its immunisation programme to reach children and adults who might have missed doses during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Director of Family Health Services in the Ministry, Dr Melody Ennis, said that vaccine outreach centres have been established in parishes and arrangements can also be made with the health departments to facilitate persons.

“I want to encourage persons to ensure that their children are vaccinated. If you are pregnant, you need to get your vaccines as well. If you have underlying health conditions – hypertension, diabetes and asthma, contact your healthcare provider to see if you are adequately vaccinated, which means you will be adequately protected,” she said, emphasising that “vaccines are not only for children”.

Jamaica’s immunisation schedule offers vaccination against 12 vaccine-preventable diseases as recommended by the World Health Organization (WHO).

Most of the vaccine doses are delivered in the first year of life, along with the measles-mumps-rubella (MMR) vaccine and booster doses of the polio vaccine in the second year.

Booster doses of the polio and diphtheria-tetanus-pertussis (DTP) vaccines are administered generally to children aged four to six, and the human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccine to 11 to 12-year-old girls.

Since 2010, the Child Health Passport, which is issued at birth, has served as the individual’s record of vaccination. Older children may have an earlier version of this document or a vaccination card.

Since April 2023, the HPV vaccine has been offered to boys nine to 14, and girls, nine to 26.

Noting that vaccines can prevent persons from contracting serious illnesses, Ennis said the minimal discomfort that some persons may feel after receiving the shots far outweighs the risk of ending up in a wheelchair for the rest of one’s life or even death.

“There is no comparison,” she argued.

She further pointed out that unvaccinated children who contract certain illnesses may suffer lifelong debilities.

Meanwhile, Ennis assured that persons who have taken the COVID-19 vaccines can donate blood, noting that “there is nothing outside of the outlined criteria that they would need to meet”.