Come Thursday, May 20, Barbados will join the rest of the world in observing World Metrology Day.

Under the theme "Measurements in Science and Technology: A Bridge to Innovation", it marks the anniversary of the signing of the Metre Convention, in France, on May 20, 1875, by 17 countries.?? The day is intended to highlight the importance of using accurate measurements in every sphere of human activity.

In providing some background details, Director of Commerce, Terry Bascombe, said Metrology, is the science of measurement broken down into three main areas – Scientific or Fundamental Metrology; Applied or Industrial Metrology and Legal Metrology.

Mr. Bascombe said this year’s theme will highlight the importance of science technology and innovation, in economic development. "Economic planners run the risk of not surpassing a certain threshold in economic progress, without the application of science and technology."

Even though some countries were more advanced in the application of Metrology, he conceded that the Caribbean was still behind in terms of exploiting its benefits.?? Mr. Bascombe noted: "Regarding our metrological structures, we are really behind and, as a consequence, our [Barbados’] involvement this year would be very limited."

Despite this, the Director of Commerce maintained that Metrology played a crucial role in commerce by checking the accuracy of fuel pump calibration; in the tourism industry; the environment – by ensuring safe drinking water; food and nutrition and the manufacturing industry.??

Metrology, Mr. Bascombe added was also useful to determine the accuracy of health care instruments and facilitating e-commerce transactions.

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