Perspective view of the sea floor of the Atlantic Ocean and the Caribbean Sea.
Significant progress has been made towards the establishment of a Caribbean Tsunami Warning Centre (CTWC) and a Caribbean Tsunami Information Centre (CTIC).
This was announced today at the conclusion of the Fourth Session of the Inter-governmental Coordination Group for the Tsunami and other Coastal Hazards Warning System for the Caribbean and Adjacent Regions (ICG/CARIBE EWS-IV) in Fort de France, Martinique. The ICG is responsible for coordinating the establishment and operation of a Tsunami Warning System for this region as part of the mandate given to UNESCO’s Inter-governmental Oceanographic Commission (IOC) to maintain global coverage.
Chairman of the ICG, Dr. Lorna Inniss of Barbados reiterated the body’s commitment to the formation of the CTWC by 2010 and pointed out that the Centre would be based in Puerto Rico.
She stated that Barbados was in the forefront of recommending the establishment of a CTIC and reiterated commitment to entering into negotiations with the IOC on making the launch in the region successful.
She further revealed that funds have already been identified under the United Nations Development Programme and within the IOC budget for the creation of the Centre.
During the meeting, member states also agreed to utilise best practices on tsunami and other coastal hazards along with community preparedness and readiness in order to improve the resilience of their own vulnerable coastal communities.
Countries were also urged to work to standardise national protocols and operating procedures to reduce response times and to inform the development of response protocols based on the results of the Caribbean Disaster Emergency Response Agency (CDERA) Tsunami and Coastal Hazards Warning System Project.
Delegates also acknowledged the role of the Government of France and the Conseil General of Martinique in facilitating the hosting of the Meeting. They also recognised the work that is presently being carried out in Martinique as part of the development of methodologies that use tsunami computer models for propagation and inundation modeling and forecasting.