Yachting stakeholders have new environmental guidebook

Stakeholders from the leisure marine sector including associations and managers of marinas and boatyards were beneficiaries of a one (1) day workshop held on Wednesday 6 February, 2019 at the Institute of Marine Affairs, Chaguaramas. The workshop, which was a collaboration between the Ministry of Trade and Industry, the Institute of Marine Affairs (IMA) and the Environmental Management Authority (EMA), formally introduced theGuidebook on Sustainable Environmental Practices for Marinas and Boatyards in Trinidad and Tobago to participants. The publication is intended to promote good environmental stewardship while also developing the yachting industry.

The Guidebook which was developed by the EMA and IMA encourages managers and users of marinas and boatyards to achieve excellence in environmental management, disaster risk reduction and safety. It is divided into two (2) sections - the first focuses on siting and design and the second on operation and maintenance applicable to various types of operations including recreational and commercial boat docking facilities; boat storage facilities; and boat building and maintenance facilities. It provides measures to ensure that economic growth in the Yachting Industry is achieved in a manner that is environmentally responsible.

The workshop, attended by participants representing 22 organisations, provided sensitisation on the National Yachting Policy 2017-2021 and also examined key aspects of the guidelines and their impact on the sector.  Both beneficiaries and facilitators expressed satisfaction with the content and mode of delivery and encouraged the coordinators to continue promotion and sensitisation activities around this sector specific information.  Mr. Jesse James, a representative of the Yacht Services Association of Trinidad and Tobago (YSATT), indicated that application of the measures contained in the Guidebook would prove beneficial to the yachting industry.  Meanwhile other participants confirmed that the knowledge gained would be filtered to their personnel and infused into their current operations where possible.

The Government continues the implementation of initiatives of the National Yachting Policy 2017-2021, such as these, to develop and stimulate growth in the yachting industry. The Policy seeks to improve the economic contribution of the Yachting industry through increased foreign exchange earnings, employment growth and business activity around yachting related services.  The Policy and Environmental Guidebook are accessible athttps://tradeind.gov.tt/yachting-policy-trinidad-tobago/ and https://tradeind.gov.tt/yachting-guidebook/ respectively.

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