James calls for establishment of Council of Science & Technology

POSTED: 07/13/11 12:01 PM

St. Maarten – United Peoples (UP) Party Member of Parliament (MP) Jules James has called for the establishment of a Council for Science and Technology (CST) that would comprise of the nation’s brightest, experienced as well as youngest to participate and advise government on science and technology trends and developments, policy issues and how these can be applied to the country’s national development. The announcement comes about a week after James read that local power electronics experts Carl Duinkerk and business development professional Kareem Rombley were at the Smart Electricity World Latam Conference in Sao Paulo, Brazil. The duo attended the conference to launch an energy production system that their company MangoGreen has been developing since 2007.  The system, called Renewable Power House system, produces utility scale reliable energy without using fossil fuel.

“We are now a country and we have to think outside the box. The proposed CST would not only comprise of researchers, engineers and entrepreneurs, but also of youthful minds. We can recall the great ideas offered by our students at the annual science fair. Countries with a CST as part of its national development model have proven what a crucial role they play in driving growth and creating jobs and opportunities for the future.  Hence, why we need to also not only look at today and tomorrow, but also the future, the long-term,” especially for our nations young people,” James said on Tuesday.

James added that the St. Maarten CST would look at strategic policy development, form  links with other such councils, promote science and engineering technology as an integral part of the national culture, promote excellence in education, promote making more effective use of research and scientific advice in the development and delivery of policy and public services across government, and promote innovation in business leading to the sustainable development of the national economy along with the health and quality of life issues of the people.

“We are a nation of intelligent and talented people with all kinds of ideas. The entrepreneurs of MangoGreen are a clear working example. The United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki-moon recently underlined the role of science and technology in helping humanity to address global challenges such as climate change, infectious diseases, terrorism, hunger, disaster preparedness and nuclear disarmament. Much has been accomplished in the past half a century to bring scientists and policy-makers together to advance common interests in peace, security and human welfare world-wide,” James said.

“As country St Maarten, we need to explore our opportunities and move forward in this area.  After the parliamentary recess, I intend to present a motion in Parliament with respect to the formation of the CST,” James concluded.

St. Maarten’s CST could also become a member of the Caribbean Council for Science and Technology, founded in 1980, MP Jules James added. The Caribbean Council represents most of the Caribbean islands as well as Suriname and Guyana. The Caribbean Community (CARICOM) designated the Caribbean Council for Science and Technology as the agency for coordinating and implementing CARICOM’s policies in science and technology.

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