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Government of Canada strengthens capacity to respond to marine pollution



#Gatineau, Quebec, #Canada – September 10, 2019 – Under the Oceans Protection Plan, the Government of Canada is making sure the Canadian Coast Guard has the equipment it needs to respond to incidents along our coastlines in a timely and efficient manner.

Following open and competitive processes, Public Services and Procurement Canada, on behalf of the Canadian Coast Guard, has awarded three contracts totalling $16.4 million to Canadian companies to provide modern and efficient equipment to respond to marine pollution incidents:

  • Aqua-Guard Spill Response Inc., of Vancouver, British Columbia, was awarded a contract of $2,575,720 for 37 compact, portable, oleophilic skimmers. They are used to recover spilled oil in both calm waters and the interior spaces of small vessels.
  • PK Welding & Fabricators Inc., of Oshawa, Ontario, was awarded a contract of $7,621,827 for 23 mobile incident command posts with built-in incident communications capabilities. The mobile incident command posts will come in three different formats and will be used by the incident management teams wherever they may be deployed. 
  • GRIFFIN Engineered Systems Inc., of Dartmouth, Nova Scotia, was awarded a contract of $6,258,518 for 220 floating fabric bladders and associated products and services. They are used to temporarily contain recovered oil in calm and protected waters in the event of a marine pollution incident.

All three contracts include options for additional associated components.


“Through the Oceans Protection Plan, the Government of Canada has made a firm commitment to keep our coastlines safe and protected. These contracts will provide the Canadian Coast Guard with critical equipment to respond to marine pollution incidents, while supporting jobs and prosperity in communities across the country.”

The Honourable Carla Qualtrough
Minister of Public Services and Procurement and Accessibility

“As part of the Oceans Protection Plan we are ensuring the dedicated women and men of the Canadian Coast Guard on all coasts have the equipment they need to best respond to potential marine incidents. Investments like these will make Canada’s oceans safer, cleaner and healthier for today and for generations to come.”

The Honourable Jonathan Wilkinson
Minister of Fisheries, Oceans and the Canadian Coast Guard

Quick facts

  • On November 7, 2016, the Prime Minister launched a $1.5-billion national Oceans Protection Plan that improves marine safety and responsible shipping, protects Canada’s marine environment, and offers new possibilities for Indigenous and coastal communities.

SOURCE:  Public Services and Procurement Canada

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Caribbean News

CARICOM sends warning as Oil prices creep higher in the Israel v Iran conflict; 14 regional states import energy



Garfield Ekon
Staff Writer

The recent attack on the Sate of Israel by the Islamic Republic of Iran, has delivered growing uncertainty across the Caribbean region, and the rest of the global economy.

Chief among the many concerns, is the free flow of oil from the Middle East, which stands at 31% of daily production for the global economy. At minimum, shipping costs are likely to increase based on the increased risk of military action in the Persian Gulf.

Pressure is also building on US and European insurance clubs to avoid any transaction, including those with China, that involve Iranian crude and additional rerouting of oil and gas shipments in response to Houthi threats, or Allied responses.

According to the Caribbean Community Council of Foreign and Community Relations (COFCOR), “these developments not only exacerbate the already tense situation but also pose significant threats to regional stability and international peace,” the group warned in a media statement.

It added that the continued cycle of retaliation, including the recent attack on Israel by Hamas, Israel’s “disproportionate response” in Gaza, and the “alarming new dimension of direct confrontations between Israel and Iran, leads to an untenable situation fraught with potential for greater regional conflict and global instability.

“The human toll of this conflict, highlighted by tragic incidents such as deaths and injuries to children, demand an immediate and empathetic response from the global community. It is imperative that there be no further escalation that can lead to more suffering and instability,” it said.

While calling for an immediate cessation of hostilities between Israel and Iran, the regional body underscored that it strongly urges both nations to halt any further military actions that could worsen the situation, endangering not only their own populations but also the broader international community.

“We implore all parties to consider the severe consequences of further conflict and to commit to diplomatic solutions that ensure the safety, sovereignty, and dignity of all people involved,” the CARICOM statement said.

On October 6, 2023, the day before Hamas attacked Israel, the international benchmark Brent crude was trading at $85 per barrel and has been fluctuating at up to $96.

On Thursday, it traded at $91 per barrel. With the exception of gas-rich Trinidad and Tobago, the 14 other countries of CARICOM, are energy importers.

Approximately 93 percent of the region’s energy needs are met by oil imports, which average 13% of Gross Domestic Product (GDP).



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world news

Open Call for Entries: PLURAL+ Youth Video Festival [Deadline – 31 May 2024]



Dear colleagues from the media.


We are thrilled to announce that our 2024 PLURAL+ Youth Video Festival is now open for submissions. The deadline to submit videos is 31 May 2024.

The PLURAL+ Youth Video Festival is a joint initiative of the United Nations Alliance of Civilizations (UNAOC) and the International Organization for Migration (IOM) that invites young creators aged up to 25 years old to submit original and creative short films of up to 5 minutes in length. This year, PLURAL+ will continue to illuminate the enduring themes of migration, diversity, and social inclusion, while also spotlighting two special categories focusing on combating xenophobia and fostering inclusive climate action. Creators of the selected videos will be honored during a Recognition Ceremony within the framework of the 10th UNAOC Global Forum in Portugal.


We kindly ask your help in disseminating this call for videos among your youth and media networks. 


Additional details are available below:

For any questions, please do not hesitate to reach out to the following colleagues:

Doğan Aşık, Strategic Partnership Consultant (UNAOC) at
Carlos Fernández, Project Management Support – Senior Assistant (UNAOC) at
Rahma Gamil Soliman, Media and Communications Officer (IOM) at


Best regards,


Julie Ann Ladanan
Web and Multimedia Communications Specialist
United Nations Alliance of Civilizations (UNAOC)

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King Charles Gives Caribbean Artists Opportunity At Dumfries House



Rashaed Esson

Staff Writer


#UnitedKingdom, April 15, 2024 – Upcoming African Caribbean Diaspora artists are being given the opportunity to live and work at King Charles 18th century Dumfries House in Scotland for three months, to hone their skills, reportedly due to an “artist in residence programme” being launched through King Charles’ charity.

This is an opportune development for aspiring Caribbean artists and comes after a collaboration between the King’s charity, that is the King’s Foundation and Maro Itoje, English rugby player and co-founder of Akjoe Residency, a charity that gives opportunities to artists from Commonwealth countries.

The programme will offer up to eight funded residencies annually and during the artists stay, they will be able to share their artistic views with exhibitions, open studios and talks; this is in line with Itjoe’s view that “art has the…ability to bring communities together.”

Featured in reports, Itoje describes the programme as providing a “haven” for established and upcoming artists, adding that the environment at Dumfries will be conducive to their development.

“They will benefit from being surrounded by the enriching ecosystem that Dumfries House provides as well as being a contributor to the growth of African art worldwide.”

Simon Sadinsky, executive of the King’s Foundation mirrors Itoje’s idea of the environment’s impact, while highlighting additional benefits of the programme saying, “The residencies, each lasting for three months, will give international artists the opportunity to gain inspiration from our beautiful Dumfries House headquarters while also benefiting from access to The King’s Foundation’s wide range of specialist workshops, expertise, and skilled craftspeople.”

Dumfries, used for education and training programmes, is open to the public all year round.

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