The NGO Sustainable Grenadines is committed to the preservation of coastal environment. It is mainly focused on uplifting the lives of people living in the Grenadine Islands located in between St. Vincent and Grenada and Grenadines. SusGren strives to manage natural resources wisely. This helps in measurable results leading to environmental health, climate resilience and biodiversity conservation. The island chains have been facing ample challenges that have a direct impact on the marine ecosystem of the Caribbean. These include a rise in the sea surface temperature and an increased frequency of hurricanes.
Sea moss cultivation is being promoted across Eastern Caribbean countries like Barbuda, St. Lucia, Belize and Trinidad. Sea moss pills are emerging as a powerhouse of health, energy and nutritional benefits. Besides economic advantage, growing organic sea moss can be a great way to fight global warming. This ensures the biodiversity does not fluctuate.
Sea Moss Cultivation Project
The Global Climate Report by NCEI stated that January 2021 global and ocean surface temperature was 1.44 °F above the 20th-century average. Thus, the month ranked as the 7th hottest January in the previous 142-year records. The good news is that seaweed farming can counter climate change. This is mainly because it uses photosynthesis to absorb carbon dioxide from the air. Deoxygenation and acidification are significant threats to the globe. So SusGren had launched a program that has a set of definite objectives.
- Increasing sea moss production (to make sea moss capsules and powder) capacity with material inputs (bottles and ropes) to boost the output.
- Help the cooperative in improving the operations by identifying target markets and coming up with new products like ice cream production.
- Negotiating sales between buyers and designing sustainable product packaging.
Raw sea moss was used to make rum punch, differently flavored soft drinks and gels that act as a thickener for cakes and sweets. All of them were legally registered back in 2015. The Caribbean region faces multiple challenges like pollution via plastics, trash and chemicals which make it vulnerable to climate change. Sea moss plantations can prevent drastic environmental changes like a storm that might save the coral reefs.
Sea Moss Cultivation: A Source of Steady Income
The SusGren initiative had a positive influence on the Caribbean islands. Anne Harvey, a school teacher, figured out that the locals need to be increasingly aware of climate change. It will motivate them to work towards developing a better future. But most of the islanders were passive which was the biggest hurdle was. However, the right people were eventually identified who wish to offer a good life to the next generation.
Efforts by the SusGren enabled them to learn the skills and ensure a proper income. Now 100 pounds a month of sea moss is sold to Grenada and mainland St. Vincent and Dominica. The NGO continues to work towards building a society that is inclined towards sustainability while helping similar bodies stay afloat and develop.
The Union Islands would be losing their mangroves areas and lagoons, if not for SusGren. These rich ecosystems with complex functions are not easy to maintain. But sea moss cultivation and beekeeping have saved the biodiversity characteristics and subsequently the livelihood of the islanders.