Concern over the growing incidence of pollution in the Caribbean has been on the rise, as it has the potential to affect livelihoods dependent on fishing and tourism. The UNEPs regional centre in the Caribbean had done extensive study of pollution in the Caribbean Sea, compiling a list of sites in the Caribbean having high pollution levels. UNEPs list served as the basis for identifying the projects areas of study. Puerto Cortes, as one of Central Americas major seaports, was among the sites selected.
Role of Nuclear Techniques
Tracking and understanding the sources of pollution in the Caribbean requires a high degree of scientific experience and know-how. The IAEA operates one of the worlds leading centres for marine environmental protection, the Monaco-based Marine Environment Laboratory (IAEA-MEL). The laboratory applies nuclear techniques to research, document pollution and other marine problems, and technically assists States facing threats to their seas and coastal waters. With its involvement, the Caribbean project was underway.
"Nuclear techniques are effective diagnostic tools for tracing sources of contaminants," says Joan Albert Sanchez-Cabeza, a physicist who heads the Radiometrics Laboratory in the IAEAs laboratories in Monaco.
The analysis focus on three types of contam
|Contact: Rodolfo Quevenco|
International Atomic Energy Agency