[www.inewsguyana.com] – TCL Guyana Inc was recently congratulated for achieving ISO 14001 EMS Certification, as with such standard, the company would contribute a great deal to sustaining the environment.
This is the first company in Guyana to ever achieve this level of international environmental certification. At a reception at the Grand Coastal Hotel on October 1, where TCL’s management celebrated their company’s international recognition for their progressive work in the sphere of cement usage and promotion in Guyana’s construction industry, Minister of Natural Resources and the Environment Robert Persaud commended the company for taking such a bold step is supporting the country’s thrust to balance development with environmental responsibilities.
The Minister observed that nationally the number of environmental permits and authorizations issued by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to industrial, commercial, mining and forestry enterprises has increased by about 100 percent over the past year.
This he says point to the sustain commitment by his Ministry to ensure that businesses operating in all areas adhere to the country’s environmental laws and standards. Other companies were urged to follow the lead by TCL Guyana.
The ISO 14001 Environmental Management Standard (EMS) was introduced in 1996 to help organisations manage the environmental aspects that are under organisational control. ISO 14001 is one of the only environmental management standards that can be certified by an external authority.
Speaking to the issue of balancing the environment with development, the Natural Resources Minister said this continues to be topical issue.
“In a country such as ours where there is an abundance of natural resources, as well as rich environmental wealth … we are confronted with what to do, how do we do it and how best we can get it done in pursuit of creating opportunities, creating prosperity for our people, yet at the same time creating justice in ensuring that we have eco justice as we pursue development.”
He said there are many areas pursued to develop natural resources especially in the extractive sector which is growing, but, “At the end of the day it is about balance, it’s about sensible utilisation and management of those resources,” he stated.
The Minister touched on industries and the environment, explaining that the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) was set up to ensure that the balance is maintained.
“We want to spur growth, create opportunities, and we also want to transform this green wealth that we have and also contribute to this growth and development,” the Minister stated.
Pointing out the importance of political stability, he noted that without this factor, “all those realities we are trying to realise and sustain, those can be affected”.
Minister Persaud also congratulated the company regarding the lowering of cement costs in Guyana whilst urging them to maintain their corporate responsibility.
Executive Director of the Guyana National Bureau of Standards (GNBS) Evadnie Innis in commending the company noted that it had taken advice to advance.
“We are always encouraging companies to strive for higher heights and strive for certification,” Innis stated.
Innis also issued a challenge to TCL. “They should not only stop at environment management, there is quality management… we are not a certifying body but we can take you up to the point of certification.”
She threw out the challenge to other companies to follow suit.