In June 2011 the Barbados Chamber of Commerce and Industry embarked on a journey with Green Business Barbados (GBB) to make operations at the secretariat more sustainable and set an example for local business of how to improve their corporate social and environmental responsibility image. The late Prime Minister, The Honorable David Thompson, stated his vision for Barbados to become “the most environmentally advanced green country in Latin America and the Caribbean.” Which has lead to the development of the Green Economy with the Government of Barbados and other Private Sector Stakeholders With this in mind, the BCCI Green Committee considered options for aspects of the Secretariats’ operations to be environmentally improvement and after research of international and local programme options, found the locally developed and therefore locally relevant GBB programme the best fit.
The programme started commenced with the appointment of a Green Officer and a Green Team consisting of employees of the secretariat. A unique feature of the GBB programme is the creation of a Green Action Plan and Strategy which includes a Green Policy. The Green Team members with the assistance of the GBB Programme Coordinator, are currently in the process of developing these documents. The initial assessment was conducted and completed with recommendations on how to move forward offered.
The BCCI is presently in the implementation phase where the Green Team, Green Officer and GBB Programme Coordinator will be implementing various measures for each of the five components of the programme. The components include waste reduction & recycling, water conservation, energy conservation & renewables, pollution control & management and environmental education. Lisa Gale the Executive Director of the BCCI opined
“We are very elated about the role the Chamber is taking in being the catalyst for the business community by implementing this programme. From this we expect our members will follow suit.”
The major focuses for the programme will be to set up a recycling programme for the building and to implement waste reduction measures in order to reduce paper use. In addition the team will look at ways to improve energy efficiency within the building by exploring efficient lighting and appliance options. Other measures such as the switch to biodegradable cleaning products and water reduction measures will also be implemented. The local products and services lists provided by GBB are also a unique feature of the programme that assists the green team in finding what they need right here in Barbados.
Finally, education is the backbone of environmental awareness and sustainable change. In order for change to occur, individuals within a community must be given the capacity to take the initiative by being offered tools to effect change. In order to facilitate this kind of evolution, a sense of personal responsibility and awareness of environmental issues must be established. This will be realised through environmental education workshops, tours of recycling and waste management facilities, educational tools and information as well as involvement in community based environmental projects.
Green Business Barbados
If your business provides green products and services and you would like included in GBB’s products and services lists or if your business wishes to explore the implementation of the Green Business Barbados programme within your own business please contact Lani Edghill, the GBB Programme Coordinator on (246) 836-6189 or at email@example.com.