The 6th Caribbean Environmental Forum (CEF-6), one of the Caribbean’s major environmental conferences, was held from 21st – 25th May 2012 in St. Kitts and Nevis. The conference was held in conjunction with the 16th Annual Wider Caribbean Waste Management (ReCaribe) Conference. The theme for the event was ‘The Green Economy: Challenges and opportunities in managing health, water, waste, land, energy, climate change and our natural resources’, prompted by the focus of the UN Conference, Rio+20, to be held in June 2012.

CEF-6 aimed to promote discussions on this topic from a Caribbean regional perspective by bringing together government officials, the private sector, civil society, the media and others to this event. The entire event included several addresses, presentation, panel discussions and exhibitions based on the topics of green economies, sustainable consumption and production, environmental health, waste management, renewable energy and energy efficiency, and more.

The BCRC-Caribbean submitted a conference paper under the topic of waste management entitled ‘Synergistic approaches to waste and chemicals management in the Caribbean Region’, which was presented by the Centre’s Director, Dr. Ahmad Khan. The paper and presentation looked briefly at the issue of waste and chemicals management in the context of sustainable development as well as furnished an overview of the various international and regional agreements and mechanisms to which Caribbean states are Parties in order to ensure the environmentally sound management (ESM) of various wastes and chemicals within the region.
There was also discussion on the coordination and cooperation of the collective efforts towards ESM of wastes and chemicals and implementation of MEAs within the waste and chemicals cluster. This has become more critical owing to the ‘synergies process’ occurring at the international environmental governance level of the waste and chemicals cluster, and the regional status with respect to the inadequacy of resources for waste and chemicals regionally. In addition, the future for waste and chemicals synergies in the Caribbean region was explored, including the possibilities for improving and increasing synergies amongst the wide array of agreements addressing the management of wastes and chemicals in the region and the role of the BCRC-Caribbean in this respect.