Although it was founded in 1995 and bilateral MOUs were previously established, several meetings were necessary to officially create RAC/REMPEITC-Caribe.
The Ninth Intergovernmental Meeting on the Action Plan for the Caribbean Environment Program and Sixth Meeting of the Contracting Parties to the Cartagena Convention for the Protection and Development of the Marine Environment of the Wider Caribbean Region
This meeting was held in Kingston, Jamaica on 14-18 February 2000. At this IGM meeting, the Contracting Parties to the Convention adopted Decision 28.b. to formally establish the Center. The Institutional Arrangements, Terms of Reference and Functions, and Terms of Reference for the Steering Committee were also accepted during this meeting. As a result, the establishment of RAC/REMPEITC-Caribe commenced upon the expiration of the existing trilateral MOU (June 2001) between the Netherlands, Netherlands Antilles, and United States.
IMO/IPIECA Global Initiative Regional Workshop on Oil Spill Preparedness, Response & Cooperation for the Wider Caribbean
This meeting was held in Curacao on 23-26 May 2000, and was coordinated between IMO, IPIECA, and RAC/REMPEITC-Caribe. The meeting reinforced the recommendation of the IX IGM that the Government of the Netherlands Antilles, UNEP-CAR/RCU, and IMO enter into an agreement to manage, supervise, and transform REMPEITC-Caribe into a Regional Activity Center under the Cartagena Convention Oil Spill Protocol. This workshop, which was part of the IMO/IPIECA ‘Global Initiative’, intended to build upon the decisions of the Contracting Parties to the Cartagena Convention and its Oil Spill Protocol and get involvement from government and industry in developing a regional system for preparedness and response to oil spills and in supporting the Regional Activity Center, REMPEITC-Caribe, as a tool to developing such a system.
Memorandum of Understanding Regarding the Establishment on the Island of Curacao, in the Netherlands Antilles of a Regional Activity Center for Marine Pollution Emergency Information and Training for the Wider Caribbean Region
As a result of the GI Conference, a MOU was signed on 26 September 2002 at the RAC/REMPEITC-Caribe facility in Curacao, between the Government of the Netherlands Antilles, UNEP-CAR/RCU and the IMO. The signatories to the MOU agreed to provide the necessary arrangements and instruments to keep the Center operating for the benefit of the nations in the Wider Caribbean Region.
After the dissolution of the Netherlands Antilles in October 10th 2010, a new MOU between UNEP, IMO, and the Government of Curaçao was necessary. After several discussions with IMO and UNEP it was decided to create two separate MOUs for the Centre. The Centre is currently coordinating the MOU between UNEP and the Ministry of Traffic, Transportation and Urban Planning of Curacao for the establishment and maintenance of the Centre. The second MOU will be between IMO and the RAC/REMPEITC-Caribe detailing implementation of the Integrated Technical Cooperation Programme activities, financial record keeping and reporting.
Ordinary Steering Committee Meeting
The RAC/REMPEITC-Caribe Steering Committee meets biennially to review and approve the progress reports, program and budget prepared by the Centre.
The meetings are generally held in Willemstad, Curaçao,. Transportation and accommodation costs are the responsibility of the members of the RAC/REMPEITC-Caribe Steering Committee. The chairmanship of the meeting circulates between all members of the RAC/REMPEITC-Caribe Steering Committee, each meeting deciding on the chairman for the subsequent gathering.
REMPEITC provides the secretariat for the meeting. The secretariat sets the date of the meeting, organizes accommodation matters, circulates the necessary documents, and prepares the minutes of the meeting. The language of the meetings and reports is English. The members of the RAC/REMPEITC-Caribe Steering Committee should delegate a representative with the appropriate credentials to make necessary decisions required. Potential donor countries, organizations or industry groups might be invited to participate in the meetings of the RAC/REMPEITC-Caribe Steering Committee as deemed appropriate.
The Steering Committee consists of representatives from Member States to the Cartagena Convention, organizations such as IMO and UNEP-CAR/RCU, and industry groups that are donating funds or in-kind support:
A non exhaustive list would be:
- The Government of Curacao
- A member of the Bureau of the Contracting Parties
- The President of the Monitoring Committee
- Regional Coordinating Unit of the United Nations Environmental Programme for the Caribbean Action Plan (UNEP-CAR/RCU)
- Donor Member States
- The International Maritime Organization
- Donor organizations
- Other interested industry groups (i.e. tourism industry)
Rules and Responsibilities
The responsibilities of the Steering Committee are to:
- Give support, guidance and feedback on the Centre’s activities;
- Review, provide input and approve the biennially Work Program;
- Review, provide input and approve the biennially Budget;
- Review and approve the yearly Annual Progress Report;
- Review and approve the yearly Annual Financial Report; and
- Ensure that the Centre’s expenditures have been legitimate and have been spent for the planned and approved activities.
To promote its objectives, RAC/REMPEITC-Caribe conducts national and regional activities throughout the Wider Caribbean Region
- Regional MARPOL Workshop – Annexes III, IV & V – Montego Bay, Jamaica
- Regional Ballast Water Management Workshop – Cartagena, Colombia
- National Workshop on Implementation of AFS Convention – Havana, Cuba
- National Workshop on Contingency Planning – Bridgetown, Barbados
- National Workshop on Ballast Water Management Convention – Nassau, Bahamas – October, November 2023