The Saint Lucia Air and Sea Ports Authority (SLAPSA) joined the world on ‘World Maritime Day’ under the theme ‘Marpol at 50: Our Commitment Goes On’ through the Division of Maritime Affairs on Thursday, 28th September 2023.
The theme commemorates Marpol’s 50th anniversary of the adoption of the International Convention for the Prevention of Pollution from the Ships. The prime focus of this theme is to inhibit pollution from the ships, which is caused by operational or accidental causes.
World Maritime Day was first held in 1978 to mark the 20th anniversary of the IMO Convention’s entry into force.
The Secretary-General – International Maritime Organization:
‘Kitack Lim’ is a South Korean politician who currently serves as the Secretary General of the International Maritime Organization. He highlighted the achievements that have already been made to protect ocean health.
According to him, “Shipping must embrace decarbonization, digitalization and innovative technology, including automation, while ensuring the human element remains front and centre of the technological and green transition to ensure a sustainable planet for future generations. MARPOL has made a difference to Shipping and the health of our ocean and will continue to do so as we look ahead to the next 50 years.”
It focuses on the importance of shipping safety, maritime security, and the marine environment.
Goals 2023 – International Maritime Organization:
This year, it was globally observed on the day of 28th September. Director of Maritime Affairs Christopher Alexander expressed that, “Countries across the world benefit from MARPOL in several ways; through its reduction in pollution from oil, chemicals, sewage, garbage, and air emissions generated by ships, it ensures a healthier marine environment despite robust shipping activity. This year, the International Maritime Organization (IMO) marks the 50th anniversary of MARPOL as a significant milestone. It provides an opportunity to reflect on the advancements made in the maritime industry, globally, regionally, and in Saint Lucia.”
Significance- World Maritime Day:
The term ‘maritime’ is derived from the Latin word “maritimus”, which means “Sea”. Since 1978, the last Thursday of September has been celebrated as World Maritime Day. The ‘International Maritime Organization’ was established in 1958, especially to coincide with this day.
The day is celebrated to recognize the work and contribution of the people engaged in the maritime industry. It also focuses on drawing public attention towards various issues related to the industry, such as Shipping, marine trade and environmental causes, among others.
Sailing Destinations in Saint Lucia:
Saint Lucia is a heaven for Sailing enthusiasts as it provides extensive opportunities to explore the Caribbean Sea. The following are some of the top sailing destinations in Saint Lucia:
- Rodney Bay – Rodney Bay is on the island’s northwest shore. The harbour is home to two marinas, Rodney Bay Marina and IGY Rodney Bay Marina. The Rodney Bay Centre includes a wide selection of pubs, eateries and stores.
Activities- Diving, Windsurfing, Snorkeling, Jet skiing.
2. Soufriere Bay – Soufriere Bay is located on the island’s southwest shore. It is eminent for its beautiful scenery, verdant hills and breathtaking waterfalls.
Activities- Snorkeling, Scuba diving, exploring pitons.
- Vieux Fort – It is located on the island’s southernmost point with many beautiful sandy beaches, turquoise water and so on.
Activities– Kiteboarding, windsurfing and local beaches.
- Castries – Castries, the capital of Saint Lucia, offers all the amenities to the required sailors. It is a centre for cruise ships, which attract many tourists.
Activities– Exploring historical places, shopping and Dining.