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UVI to Host St. Thomas Workshops on Environmental Health and Safety

The University of the Virgin Islands will host a series of free environmental health and safety workshops on Nov. 17, on its St. Thomas Campus. The University is conducting the workshops as part of an agreement with the Environmental Protection Agency which requires it to provide community outreach to schools and selected small businesses.

The workshops will take place over the course of the day, with the morning session - 9 a.m. to noon - targeting schools and students on the junior high and secondary levels, the afternoon session - 2 p.m. to 5 p.m. - for UVI faculty and staff, and the evening session - 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. - for specific elements of the small business community.

"We wanted specifically to offer an evening session for businesses, because we wanted to attract small businesses. But we also wanted to be mindful of the fact that many of these businesses might not be able to spare employees during the active business day," said LilyMae Durante, UVI's acting St. Thomas campus executive administrator. Her office is coordinating the workshops.

The workshops will focus on activities with potential adverse environmental impacts such as the maintenance of science laboratories and art programs in schools which require the use of paints, solvents and other chemicals, and in small businesses such as those involving automotive repair, dry cleaners, gas station operators, marine operations and printing operations. Participants will have the opportunity to review pertinent environmental regulations as well as requirements for hazardous waste, solid waste, solid waste recycling and the treatment of waste water.

The workshops are offered in conjunction with a national consultant, Prizim, which specializes in environmental health and safety, but will also feature presentations from local government regulatory agencies, including the Department of Planning and Natural Resources and the Virgin Islands Waste Management Authority. Representatives of the Environmental Protection Agency also will present pertinent regulatory information essential for keeping businesses on the right side of the law.

The workshops are being provided at no cost to participants and include time-appropriate meals and snacks. Interested persons are asked to contact the University at (340) 693-1266 by 4:30 p.m. on Thursday, Nov. 12, to register for the workshops. See schedule below.

Workshop Schedule - Tuesday, Nov. 17, 2009 - UVI St. Thomas Campus

  • Junior and Secondary High Schools - 9 a.m. to noon - Classroom Administration Building, CAB room 305
  • UVI Faculty and Staff - 2 p.m. to 5 p.m. -Administration and Conference Center, First Floor
  • Small Businesses - 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. - Administration and Conference Center, First Floor.