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Ministry of Works & Transport

World Oceans Day Message 2016

World Oceans Day Message 2016 Printable Version

08 Jun 2016

MESSAGE FROM THE HONOURABLE FITZGERALD HINDS,
MINISTER OF WORKS AND TRANSPORT
In Trinidad and Tobago, it is estimated that almost 80% of all socio-economic activities and 70% of the population are located along the coast. The country’s economy has traditionally been supported by coastal and marine resources, which primarily includes oil and gas, tourism and fisheries. Emerging economic strategies to foster a diversified economy will target sectors such as tourism, agriculture and other maritime activities. Such emerging strategies will depend on a healthy coastal environment, which includes healthy oceans, if sustainable benefits are to be realized.

Today, as World Oceans Day is celebrated globally, the Ministry of Works and Transport stands in support of the thrust for healthy oceans through the prevention of plastic ocean pollution. Every year it is estimated that over 8.5 million tons of plastic are dumped into the world’s oceans. Plastic ocean pollution disrupts marine ecosystems and is hazardous to the global seafood supply. We urge every citizen to commit to keeping plastic trash out of our oceans.

The theme for this year’s World Oceans Day "Healthy Oceans, Healthy Planet", addresses the significance of oceans around the planet, by highlighting their importance to human society, whilst recognizing the considerable challenges we face in maintaining the benefits that oceans provide. It is our individual and collective duty to interact with oceans in a sustainable manner, so as to meet our current needs without compromising those of future generations.

The Ministry of Works and Transport, having been charged with the responsibility for management of coastal erosion and coastal flooding appreciates the impact of oceans on human society and conversely, the impact that human society has on our oceans.

As the Minister of Works and Transport, I have made a commitment to the preservation and rehabilitation of our
coastlines, that vulnerable area where our land meets the oceans. On World Oceans Day 2016, I reaffirm this and look forward to working with communities as we seek to realize this goal.
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