My Thoughts on Technology and Jamaica

Wednesday, April 27, 2016

How Herzog's US$500 million Jamaican Railway Plans threatened by Highway 2000 and Squatters

“The plan is to have the trains up and running in December. That is the view of Minister Mike Henry. Herzog is in Jamaica now doing preliminary work to do the resuscitation”

Communications Department at the Ministry of Transport, Vando Palmer on Wednesday April 20th 2016

Looks like the railways are coming in December 2016 after all as Minister of Transport and Works Mike Henry has promised.

United States-based Herzog International has plans to fix the railway tracks to launch a downtown Kingston to Linstead journey on the trains as reported in the article “Herzog Set To Resuscitate 207 Km Of Jamaican Rail”, published Sunday April 24, 2016 by Steven Jackson, The Jamaica Gleaner.

The Jamaican Government, then led by the PNP (People's National Party) received a revised plan from United States-based Herzog International in December 2015. This plan involves:

1.      Fixing nearly two-thirds of Jamaica's rail network
2.      Restarting the Railway service targeted by December 2016
3.      Initial Launch of downtown Kingston to Linstead leg by September 2016

This turns out to be some 207 kilometres of the 334.9km rail track as stated in the Fiscal Policy Paper 2016-17, quote: “Herzog has undertaken necessary due diligence, and at December 2015, the company submitted a revised business plan to rehabilitate approximately 207 kilometres of the 334.9km rail track. The work will be undertaken on a phased basis”.

Hopefully this will include seating and railway cars made out of Bamboo and come with free Wi-Fi as predicted in my blog article entitled “How Mike Henry's Railway Revival means Wi-Fi and Bamboo Train Carriage seats by September 2016”. 

Herzog International Inc and the Jamaican Railway Network - How US$500 million investment may be derailed by Highway 2000 and Squatters

It’s good to note at this point that the Railway's revival isn't a PNP or JLP Proposal; both political parties have floated this idea in one way or another.

In fact, Herzog International Inc had been negotiating with the Jamaican Government and had plans to privately invest some US$500 million in the Jamaican Railway Corporation as noted in the article “Henry rails Government over train service”, published Monday, January 04, 2016, The Jamaica Observer.

The real problem is the compensation of some 2000 squatters who live on lands owned by the Jamaica Railway Corporation. They are Jamaican citizens too and have to be compensated, especially if they've been on the land longer than 12 years and can furnish documents to prove this as noted in the article “How To Apply For Title By Adverse Possession”, Published Monday December 15, 2014 by Sherry Ann McGregor, The Jamaica Gleaner.

However, there is no problem with the developement of the Railway as it relates to the Highway 2000 Project. Despite an agreement to not build any other modes of transportation that would compete with the highway due to the concession agreement for Highway 2000, the DBJ (Development Bank of Jamaica) says that this isn't an issue.

In fact, they point out that any in highway revenues that can be attributed to any new transportation system that give people an option to the Highway would result in the Government of Jamaica compensating the High operators.

The level of compensation would be determined by the an independent traffic adviser mutually agreed between the National Road Operating and Construction Company that represents the Jamaican Government and TransJamaican Highway, the developer and concessionaire for Highway 2000.

This was considered recently when improvements wee being considered to improve the Mandela Highway ability to handle traffic and flooding due to rains as noted in the article “Mandela Highway Upgrade Could Trigger H2K Compensation”, published Sunday November 1, 2015 by McPherse Thompson, The Jamaica Gleaner.

It'll be interesting to see if their plans to launch by December 2016 will be achieved. And hopefully, with free Wi-Fi and Bamboo Train Carriage seats for a trial run in of the downtown Kingston to Linstead leg by September 2016!

Monday, April 25, 2016

Why JCAA Special Aerial Work Permit needs to be adjusted to promote Professional Drone Racing

The Drone Industry in Jamaica is dying a slow death in Jamaica.

It's been a year since the JCAA (Jamaica Civil Aviation Authority) issued guidelines on the use of drones in Jamaica as described in my blog article entitled “JCAA Drones Regulations - Why GOJ Double-Standard suggest Commercial Drone Pilot Licenses are coming”. 

Now a year later, these regulations are still in effect and compliance is high as reported in the article “Drone Operators Abiding By Guidelines, Says JCAA”, published Thursday April 21, 2016 by Sherine Williams, The Jamaica Gleaner.

According to JCAA's Deputy Director General for Regulatory Affairs, Rohan Campbell, professional drone operators can apply for JCAA's Special Aerial Work Permit which is free of cost. The process to get a permit takes two (2) days whether sent by letter or email but it isn't as straightforward as it might sound.

JCAA's Restrictive Special Aerial Work Permit - Why Drone Industry is inevitable as Ministry of Agriculture

First, the JCAA has to check the location where the drones are to be flown. If on checking the area they discover there is a potential for a breach in guidelines, they permit will not be granted.

Even more annoying is that you have to have a permit for every event. This means that if you applied late, you won’t get your permit in time, something that is a thorny issue for many professional Drone Operators as noted in the article “Drone Operator Says JCAA Guidelines Are Restrictive”, published Thursday April 21, 2016 by Sherine Williams, The Jamaica Gleaner.

So guess my Jamaica Drone Developer Competition will not ever become reality, as the skies are not open for FPV (First Person Viewing) Racing as described in my blog article entitled “How Luke Bannister won the UAE's inaugural World Drone Prix as World Future Sports Games in December 2017”. 

however, the Jamaican Police are interested in using drones for fighting crime as evidenced form their use in St. James in their eyes in the Sky Project as noted in my blog article entitled “Eye in the Sky Project in Montego Bay – How Drones reduce Crime in St James in 6 months as NAITS Initiative gets Rebooted”. 

Still, with the Ministry of Agriculture seeking to use Drones for surveillance for Honduran fishermen in the Pedro Banks as noted in my blog article entitled “@agriministryja Poacher Spotting Drones – Ministry of National Security to Determine How Drones can Fly Farther” a Drone Industry is inevitable.

Sunday, April 24, 2016

How Jamaica's going Nuclear can revive Bauxite, Manufacturing and Telecoms with Cheaper Electricity

Jamaica is finally getting serious about Nuclear power. And the IAEA (International Energy Atomic Agency) is here to help.

The idea of Nuclear power has the support of both the PNP (People's National Party) and the JLP (Jamaica Labour Party) as noted in the article “Nuclear Gets Positive Energy - Government And Opposition Agree As International Agency Offers Help Whenever The Country Is Ready”, published Sunday April 10, 2016 by Ryon Jones, The Jamaica Gleaner.

Director General of the International Atomic Energy Agency, IAEA, Yukiya Aman, while speaking after touring ICENS (International Centre for Environmental and Nuclear Sciences) at the UWI (University of the West Indies), declared that IAEA would assist Jamaica in going Nuclear, quote: “If you decide to use nuclear power generation we will help you to use it safely, securely and sustainably”.

The Minister of Energy, Science and Technology Andrew Wheatley has given support or the idea of using Nuclear power, but has given not timeline for it implementation. A serious public-education campaign has to be done to ensure Jamaica will not go down the same road as the Fukushima Nuclear accident in Japan that occurred on Friday March 11 2011 as detailed in my Geezam blog article entitled “Japan Nuclear Reactor Meltdown is the Asian Tiger Chernobyl

They're have to identify serious investors, as building a Nuclear Reactor is very expensive.

Aside from support from the IAEA, we've already passed a Jamaica passes Nuclear Safety and Radiation Act on Friday July 17 2015, paving the way for Nuclear Energy as predicted in my blog article entitled “Jamaica passes Nuclear Safety and Radiation Act - Why ICENS Slowpoke is being upgraded and How Nuclear Power may mean Cheaper 4G LTE”.

So why is Nuclear Energy of interest to Jamaica all of a sudden?

Jamaica considering Nuclear Energy - Why JPS Co does not need Nuclear Power as LNG is ok

For one, it can't be for generating electricity for Jamaicans.

JPS Co CEO Kelly Tomblin as declared that the cost of electricity has fallen some 7% for the month of April 2016 when compared to March 2016 as noted in the article “Seven Per Cent Cut In Light Bills This Month”, Published Wednesday April 20, 2016, The Jamaica Gleaner

Still, the rates we're getting are some of the lowest in the Caribbean:

1.      US$0.19 per kilowatt hour for householders
2.      US$0.14 per kilowatt hour for industrial manufacturers

We’ve basically gone back in time some 10 years to when we last paid less than US$0.20 per kilowatt for electricity. This thanks to the price of oil falling to rock bottom at US$26 a barrel, mainly thanks to Iran now agreeing to cut output as noted in “Top oil countries fail to reach deal on production freeze”, published April 17, 2016 by Charles Riley and John Defterios, CNN Money

However, that was last week and things change really fast on Wall Street.

We're now in the midst of a two week rally as the price of oil is climbing again as noted in the article “Oil Producers Lock In Once-Snubbed Prices”, published April 24, 2016 by Timothy Puko and Erin Ailworth, The Wall Street Journal

It’s now at US$43.73 and climbing, which means that the prices we're experiencing now from JPS Co for electricity may soon rise. Still, these are some pretty low prices; production in Jamaica should increase even as investors hedge their bets on higher prices in the future as demand ramps up.

Also, JPS Co is going LNG (Liquid Natural Gas) with the help of American contractor New Fortress as noted in the article “JPS Gets Green Light To Build 190MW Plant”, Published Thursday March 24, 2016 by McPherse Thompson, The Jamaica Gleaner, prices for which is relatively cheap.

Nuclear energy could be something pursued later on when Jamaicans can comfortably live with a Nuclear Reactor on the island as pointed out by Minister of Energy, Science and Technology Andrew Wheatley, quote: “While we might not be ready for it (nuclear energy) now, it is something that is part of the energy policy, and some time down the road Jamaica might find itself in a position where we are able to utilise nuclear energy”.

So who else would need cheap electricity in large amounts?

Bauxite and Alumina Industry - Cheaper Electricity would revive Bauxite and Alumina Industry

A possible candidate would be the Bauxite Industry, manufacturing and Telecoms.

With the potential cost of electricity begin a low as US$0.06 per kilowatt-hour, it would give the Bauxite and Alumina industry a boost and wean us off imported oil altogether, to quote Opposition Minister Phillip Paulwell: “I believe that with nuclear you can get down to US$0.06 per kilowatt-hour”.

This as the cost of electricity, which is mainly produced by Bauxite mining companies from Diesel and Bunker C Heavy Oil is not cost effective enough to make the price of their bauxite competitive. This may have been a contributing factor to NAHC (Noranda Aluminium Holding Corporation), the holding company for Noranda Jamaica Bauxite Partners filing for bankruptcy in February 2016 as reported in the article “Noranda files for bankruptcy protection, plans to restructure”, published Monday, February 08, 2016, The Jamaica Observer.
A large source of cheap power, such as hydroelectric power from a very large river, Nuclear Power or a very large solar Steam system as described in my blog article entitled “BrightSource Energy Plant Concentrated Solar Rays Killing Birds - Pheromone Traps for Insects a Desert Feast to Keep the Birds Safe” would make mining bauxite, producing alumina and even making aluminium possible.

Nuclear power could potentially be a part of the rescue plan for the Government of Jamaica 51% stake in Noranda Jamaica Bauxite Partners, which operates Noranda Bauxite Limited on their behalf as noted in “Finance Minister Meeting with Principals of Noranda”, published March 30, 2016 By Latonya Linton, The Jamaica Information Service.

Also, the most likely design would be a Thorium Reactor as opposed to a traditional uranium(IV) oxide (UO2) based reactor as described in my MICO Wars blog article entitled “What is Radioactivity, Half-Life and Radioisotopes”. 

Thorium Reactors in Jamaica – Jamaican Guinea Pig as Telecom Providers might be game

Thorium-90 reactors used in LFTR (Liquid fluorine Thorium Reactors), due to the liquid nature of their nuclear fuel, can be very small, with the Reactor Chamber fitting inside of a four bedroom apartment as pointed out by Opposition spokespersons on Energy, Phillip Paulwell, quote: “It is in the energy policy and I do believe that it will be a viable option, especially because we anticipate that the mini nuclear plants, what we call compact plants, will be fully developed in another five to 10 years”.

Opposition minister Paulwell is however, keeping an eye on them, as they may be the key to US$0.12 US$0.10 per kilowatt-hour in the future, quote: “That will enable us to have facilities that can generate up to 50 megawatts of capacity. Right now, the plants are huge and it wouldn't be therefore appropriate for Jamaica. These prototypes are being developed, we are aware of them and it will enable us to get to less than the US$0.12 US$0.10 per kilowatt-hour that I was fixed”.

Still, LFTR have a long way to go before they become commercially viable as Jamaica has no plans on becoming a guinea pig. However, Private Sector companies, including Telecom Providers, can potentially get a license to import and operate their own Private LFTR Reactor under the Nuclear Safety and Radiation Act as pointed out in my blog article entitled “Jamaica passes Nuclear Safety and Radiation Act - Why ICENS Slowpoke is being upgraded and How Nuclear Power may mean Cheaper 4G LTE”. 

So the Jamaica Government sudden interest in Nuclear power is not to produced cheap electricity for Jamaicans as we're not there yet to quote Minister of Energy, Science and Technology Andrew Wheatley: “Look at what is taking place now in other jurisdictions, especially parts of Europe, we are seeing very, very cheap energy in areas where they use nuclear energy, and we are also excited at the possibility of using it, but we are also mindful that where we are right now, we are not ready for it”.

Rather, it's to keep the Bauxite and alumina industry and eventually the manufacturing industry in Jamaica alive via a cheaper source of power that would make bauxite mining, alumina production and even making aluminum possible.

How JA$100 for recycling 500ml Plastic bottles and Styrofoam Ban will save Jamaica's Environment

Finally, Jamaica is listening on no better day than Earth Day on Friday April 22nd 2016.

A Private Member's Motion in the works from G2K (Generation 2000) president Senator Matthew Samuda to ban plastics bags and styrofoam as reported in the article “Senator Pushes For Jamaica To Ban Plastic Bags, Styrofoam”, published Friday April 22, 2016, The Jamaica Gleaner.

Samuda claims he plans to bring the motion to parliament when a window of opportunity opens. Senator Matthew Samuda has made it clear that he believes that due to Jamaica’s inadequate recycling of plastics, styrofoam and plastic bags, particularly scandal bags are becoming a nuisance at landfills. For this reason a ban on plastic bags below 50 gallons would encourage local producers to make environmentally friendly plastic bags.

What got me excited really, is that this seems to be follow on of Guyana's decision to ban the importation of styrofoam as of Friday April 1st 2016 as noted in my blog article entitled “Why Guyana banning Styrofoam and How Jamaican Bee farmers can benefit”.  

But what would these environmentally friendly options be?

Senator Matthew Samuda imported plastics and styrofoam ban - Newspaper and Cardboard with beeswax in Biodegradable Packaging Industry

A ban on Plastics below a 50 Gallon capacity would basically include scandal bags. Similarly, a ban on Styrofoam would cut out the importation of the material commonly associated with lunch boxes in Jamaica.

The replacements options have to be locally made, biodegradable and be long lasting without including plastic. This would encourage local recycler of cardboard and paper such as Nationwide Waste Services Ltd as described in my blog article entitled “How Nationwide Waste Services Ltd makes money from Recycling Cardboard and Bauxite Topsoil” to consider making VAS (Value Added Products) from the raw material instead of just sending it abroad to be recycled.

50 gallon plastic container can be replaced with recycled newspaper, recycled paper and recycled woodchip bags coated with beeswax to make them more durable and waterproof. Cardboard food boxes, also coated with beeswax can also be made to replace styrofoam.

Both of these initiatives can be made right here in Jamaica and would be of benefit to the Newspaper companies, cardboard recyclers as well as to honeybee farmers as noted in my blog article entitled “Jamaican Honeybees and American FoulBrood Disease - How the Ministry of Agriculture ban on Imported Honey protects local Agriculture Industry” 

The ban on imported plastics and styrofoam would potentially create a multi-million dollar biodegradable packaging industry that would save our environment, including our coral reefs in the long run.

Improved collection using marked bins and milling machines – Reducing Garbage for easier recycling

A ban on imported plastics isn't just an opportunity to make money by creating a new industry to replace these imported items.

It can also expand the scope of the Recycle Now Jamaica Project to Recycle PETE Plastic launched back in 2014 as noted in my blog article entitled “How GOJ JA$200 million Recycle Now Jamaica Project to Recycle PETE Plastic Waste will power JEEP”. 

The companies involved in Recycle Now Jamaica Project recycle plastic, the Wisynco Group, Pepsi- Cola Jamaica, GraceKennedy Foods and Services, Jamaica Beverages, Lasco, Trade Winds Citrus, and Seprod recycle PET plastic for use in their own products. However, citizens need to be encouraged and empowered with ways to make money from recycling, as that is the best way to make recycling plastics a part of our thinking as Jamaicans.

The best way to do this is initially via legislation to make littering a more serious offense as JA$2,000 is way too low as noted in the article “Over 800 hauled before court for littering, dumping”, published Monday, January 18, 2016, The Jamaica Gleaner.

Once something more realistic, such as a JA$100,000 fine is in place, Jamaicans can then be encouraged to place different types of garbage into different bins as follows:

1.      Plastics
2.      Electronics
3.      Organic Waste
4.      Cardboard and Paper
5.      Metals
6.      Glass

The garbage bins themselves can be made from recycled material, be it plastic, Metal or even Bamboo, an idea sure to please the bamboo farmers in Peckham, Clarendon as noted in my blog article entitled “Bamboo Farming in Peckham, Clarendon – How Bamboo Farming boosts Clarendon Farming via Export of VAP”.

Most garbage collectors merely throw the garbage into the garbage trucks to be dumped at the Riverton City Dump. Instead of this traditional way of collecting garbage, the NSWMA could sell those trash compactor and replace them with cheaper panel Liteace Vanes retrofitted with a mini generators and a small milling machine for each type of garbage.

In order to reduce the cost of running these Liteace Vanes, they could be powered using biofuels such as recycled cooking oil reused as biodiesel as envisioned by the PCJ (Petroleum Corporation in Jamaica) in my blog article entitled “Why Biodiesel and Hydroelectric Power at PCJ's Alternative Energy Expo a must before 2020” 

This milling machine would be used to mill and reduce the different types of waste to a fine powder. This as the garbage collectors collecting the garbage from these specially marked bins would run the milling machine, pulverizing waste and storing in bins inside of the Liteace Vanes.

This is all possible, as the garbage collected currently isn’t compacted properly and would take up a lot less space if minced into smaller size.  

This would make it possible to collect a lot more garbage, as by masticating and mincing it into smaller pieces, it takes up less space and is easier to transport in a smaller vehicle, store and process for recycling. It would also be cost effective, as the Liteace Vanes would themselves be powered by recycled organic waste such as cooking oil converted into biodiesel, making the whole operation self-sustaining over the long run.

JA$100 value on 500ml bottles would encourage plastic recycling - Ban on microbeads needed as Coral Reefs also in danger

Aside from specially marked rubbish bins to place plastics, increasing the recycling value of plastics would also make sense.

This as by encouraging someone to return a plastic bottle, it reduced the cost of recovering it from the environment by the NSWMA as well as saving the environment so that Jamaicans and tourist can enjoy it!

So JA$100 per recycled 500ml bottle would make sense, as that would roughly be the cost for the NSWMA (National Solid Waste Management Authority) to not only remove plastics but also remove its potential long term effects on the environment, as plastics do not biodegrade. 

Then making it easy to get paid for recycling would also be great.

Recycling depots where you return a plastic bottle and get credited with JA$100 in any form you wish, be it to your bank account via mobile money or even to your phone credit or JUTC Smarter Card in exchange for Free Wi-Fi as explained in my blog article entitled “Why JUTC Wi-Fi by September 2016 means Digicel Mobile Money launch imminent” would speed up the rate at which plastics would be removed from the environment.

Hopefully along with banning plastics and styrofoam, Senator Matthew Samuda and other of similar thinking can pressure NEPA (National Environmental and Planning Agency) to ban bathing and washing products that contain microbeads as the US of A have done since December 2015 as noted in my blog article entitled “How US microbeads ban by 2017 means NEPA ban coming to protect Coral Reefs”.

Our future generations will thank us for this forward thinking initiative as JA$100 is a small price to pay to ensure Jamaica’s future survival.

Saturday, April 23, 2016

How University of California, Irvine Mya Le Thai made Gold nanowire in Li-Ion Batteries last Forever

Serendipitous discoveries are quite the thing in science. In the case of university doctoral candidate Mya Le Thai, it may prove to be the discovery of a lifetime.

Researchers at the University of California, Irvine jointly along with nanostructure researchers at the University of Maryland have “discovered” a way to make gold nanowires last longer in a Li-Ion Battery assembly as reported in the article “UCI scientists stumble upon the key to never-ending batteries”, published April 22, 2016 By Rick Stella, Digitaltrends.

Their research was published in the on Wednesday April 20th 2016 in the American Chemical Society’s Energy Letters. Interestingly, this video spins a better story than I could ever write, abstract and all.

Gold nanowires are used as filaments in Li-Ion batteries. As thin as a human hair, they're very fragile and break easily. When assembled into a Li-Ion Battery as connectors to carry electrical charge during charging/discharging, they usually break down after 5,000 to 6,000.

After the coating, the gold nanowires lasted for a whopping 200,000 charge/discharge cycles over a three (3) month period. Interestingly, the Li-Ion battery continued to charge/discharge without any drop in capacity or power output.
So what evil force possessed university doctoral candidate Mya Le Thai to even think of adding more mass to something so delicate that probably cost a fortune to make at such a small level?

University of California, Irvine Mya Le Thai eternal Gold nanowire – How dipping it in manganese dioxide did the trick

This serendipitous discovery means Hydrogen Fuel Cell in your Apple iPhone as predicted in my blog article entitled “Intelligent Energy Hydrogen Fuel Cell for Apple - How Hydrogen can give Apple products weeks of battery life by 2017” will have to take a back seat.  

The coating that was added was manganese dioxide (MnO2) which was then placed in an electrolyte gel. 

Possibly the manganese dioxide provided a well of extra electrons that prevented the normally fragile gold nanowire from breaking down as surmised in “All powered up”, published April 20 2016, University of California, Irvine News.

Or it may be as simple as making the gold nanowire more flexible and bendable as Mya Le Thai pointed out, quote: “The coated electrode holds its shape much better, making it a more reliable option. This research proves that a nanowire-based battery electrode can have a long lifetime and that we can make these kinds of batteries a reality.”

Whatever the cause for this boost in performance, Li-Ion Batteries with better performance may be only 2 to 5 years away after this get's thoroughly explained, an industrial process developed and then patent applications filed for potential uses.

Tuesday, April 19, 2016

How Respect Jamaica and UNICEF Survey suggest Mass Exodus of High School Leavers in 2016

Jamaican professionals connected to the Government of Jamaica's Public Sector are leaving the island in a slow trickle. Some 100,000 Jamaicans migrated to the US, Canada and the UK between the year 2010 and 2013.

So it might not surprise you to know that Jamaicans between the ages of 14 and 40 have already made up their minds to leave Jamaica as reported in the article “Anywhere But Afghanistan - 80% Of Jamaican Youngsters Want To Migrate”, published Sunday April 10, 2016, by Erica Virtue, The Jamaica Gleaner.

This is based on the result of a phone interview survey commissioned by Respect Jamaica and the local office of UNICEF. The Survey, which was done between Monday February 29th 2016 and Thursday March 3rd 2016, canvassed the opinions of 3,024 respondents from the Digicel customer base in Jamaica.

The results make for interesting reading:

1.      81% between the ages of 14 and 40 have the intention to leave Jamaica
2.      75% between 14 and 19 years old would leave for better opportunities
3.      83% between the ages of 20 and 25 would also go
4.      81% between 26 and 40 would seek out greener pastures overseas

Those findings were also consistent a 2014 by the Centre for Leadership and Governance in the Department of Government at the University of the West Indies, Mona. They discovered that 49.3% young Jamaicans would give up their citizenship to gain educational and work opportunities in that country as reported in the article “Poll Says Jamaicans Are Eager To Leave Country”, published Wednesday February 11, 2015 by Gary Spaulding, The Jamaica Gleaner.

With a sample error of +/-3%, this can almost be said to be representative of the island of Jamaica as a whole. So is there any other study that can confirm this?

Respect Jamaica and the local office of UNICEF Survey - 14 and 40 packing their bags for Greener pastures

These findings mirror those of a January 2015 Gleaner-commissioned Bill Johnson poll as reported in the article “Poll Says Jamaicans Are Eager To Leave Country”, published Wednesday February 11, 2015 by Gary Spaulding, The Jamaica Gleaner.

In that poll of some 1,100 persons conducted between Saturday January 17th to Sunday January 18th 2015, the Gleaner-commissioned Bill Johnson poll discovered similar results:

1.      43% said that either they or person/s in their immediate families hoped to migrate to another country within the next five years or so
2.      39% indicated that no one in their families had signalled an interest in migrating
3.      18% indicated that they did now know

When broken down using the age demographic, the results become harrowingly similar across all age ranges as it relates to leaving Jamaica:

1.      44% of youth between the ages of 18 and 24 years indicated that they would fly out of Jamaica
2.      44% between the ages of 25 and 34 would leave
3.      46% between the ages of 35 and 44 would leave

As expected, those 55 and older were basically settled and had no such desire:

1.      33% of persons between 55 and 64 years would leave
2.      22% of Jamaicans 65 and over would leave

So where are they planning to go?

Jamaicans like the US, Canada and UK - The Middle East not yet on their Radar

The main choices for Immigrating Jamaicans were also not surprising:

1.      US
2.      Canada
3.      UK

This is confirmed by Kemario Davis, who falls in the 20-25 age group, quote: “Of course, if I had the chance right now, I would be looking towards Canada and the United States (US). There are better opportunities there, especially for education and em”.

Apparently anywhere except the Middle East is better, even the small islands, despite the Middle East paying far more money, to quote Mr. Davis: “If I see where I can go to some small island where I can get US$5,000 per month, it will be much better than staying here”.

He might want to reconsider that, as Saudi Arabia and UAE (United Arab Emirates) are hiring based on this facebook page New Jobsin Dubai.

University student AndrĂ© Stephens also has his sights set on these countries, quote: “Yes, I would migrate, especially to Canada, because of the opportunities for young professionals. There are opportunities for citizenship [as well as] work-and-study programmes in areas such as social work, which provide for a pension in later life. Here, there is stagnation. The 9-5 job cannot provide enough income, and all it does is ensure that you don't leave your parents' house”.

Not surprising, considering that many UWI students opt to do courses that will not make them employable based on a Graduate Tracer Study released by the UOPD (University Office of Planning and Development) in November 2015 as per my analysis in my blog article entitled “UOPD UWI Graduate Trace Study reveals Bad choices, Entrepreneurship and brain-drain in 2016”. 

Engineering, Medicine and Education, albeit more difficult, guarantee employment in Jamaica. But this is if you can even afford Tertiary education. High School leavers are therefore faced with having to work in a Call Center and still live with their parents.

This is a reality that can be very frustrating especially as the Government gives many jobs to foreigners despite increased FDI (Foreign Direct Investment) as explained my blog article entitled “FDI and Jamaican Work Permits granted to Foreigners – FDI increase when Infrastructure Project start due to Skilled Certified Labour Shortage”. 

So Engineering, Medicine and Education may not be safe after all, as many of these foreigners often do not leave when their work permits expire.

Migration among Professionals rising - Mass exodus of trained professionals and High School leavers in 2016

Still education is also having it own mini crisis as Mathematics and Science Teachers are leaving due to low salaries as argued by Educate Jamaica as noted in my blog article entitled “Why Educate Jamaica says JA$250,000 monthly for Ministry of Education Mathematics and Science Teachers”.  

Already teachers are leaving to get JA$5 million salaries in England as explained in my blog article entitled “How JA$5 million salaries in Britain means English Teacher Exodus from Ministry of Education”.  And nurses are also leaving as well as noted in my blog article entitled “Why Jamaican Nurses Exodus will increase if no improvement in Health Care Sector”.

So are we witnessing a coming mass exodus of not only trained professionals but also High School leavers in 2016?