New threat

South coast sewage being diverted to Graeme Hall swamp

One of this country’s few remaining ecological attractions is apparently now under threat from the worsening sewage spill on the south coast.

Some business owners and residents impacted by the spills have taken matters into their own hands and are resorting to dumping the vile smelling effluence, which has pooled in their backyards for months, into the Graeme Hall swamp.

With the Barbados Water Authority (BWA) unable to get a handle on the long running crisis, which has been the subject of health and travel advisories from the United States, Canada and the United Kingdom, some people are directing the filth from their property into the nature sanctuary.

This morning Barbados TODAY visited the swamp and witnessed the foul smelling contents of a pipe being pumped into the marshlands.

The PVC line was traced to the back of the building formerly known as Club Extreme, into a catchment of foul smelling water.

Business owners and residents impacted by the south coast sewage spills have taken matters into their own hands and are resorting to dumping the vile smelling effluence directly into the Graeme Hall swamp .

A second pipe was seen along the side of the building and running to the swamp. However no liquid was flowing from it at the time.

An official who identified himself as a BWA consultant was also present at the scene this morning and expressed grave concern over what he saw.

“This is highly illegal. I can’t believe that people would be so nasty,” said the consultant, who did not want to be identified.

Two residents of the area, neither of whom wanted to be named, told Barbados TODAY the pipelines had been there for more than a week. The men also reported that they had seen privately owned septic trucks dumping their contents into the swamp over weekend.

“I can’t tell if it was one truck making two trips or two trucks, but I saw them dumping the s**t into the swamp and leave,” one of the residents said.

“The thing make me sick because I know people does be fishing in that swamp. I know just now you going see fish kills in that swamp. I want to believe they were pumping off people’s yards in the area and they wanted to make a fast turn around.”

Meanwhile, community activist Adrian Donovan, who said he had seen the pipes and had heard the reports of the septic trucks, strongly condemned those behind the dumping.

However, Donovan argued that such action was a sign that people were now fed up of waiting on Government for a solution.

“I can’t say if it is illegal because I don’t know if people got permission to do what they did, but either way it is wrong because this is an environmental disaster. However, at the same time you have to ask yourself how long can people wait for a solution while sewage is in their backyard and breeding mosquitoes and affecting their health and their businesses,” he told Barbados TODAY.

When contacted this afternoon Minister of Health John Boyce said he was unaware of the situation, but gave the assurance that the matter would be investigated.

“Anything of that nature must be illegal, so once an investigation is done we would notify the property owner that they can’t do that. When these things are brought to our attention we take them seriously, but bear in mind that the responsibility is not always on the Ministry of Health, but if a person is dumping illegally the premise has always been to address it,’ Boyce said.

However, BWA General Manager Keithroy Halliday told Barbados TODAY this afternoon that he was made aware of the pipes, and steps were being taken to address the matter immediately.

“The situation is of tremendous concern to us, the Ministry of Health and the Ministry of the Environment, if it is that waste is being disposed of in the canal . . . . The two pipes were drawn to our attention and we have discussed it and we are going to put the remedial action this week to ensure that we are not endangering the swamp. But in regards to the trucks, I heard it yesterday, but I am hoping that it is just a malicious comment being made because we employed a number of private haulers and it would be good if we had more information because it certainly has to be investigated,” Halliday said.

colvillemounsey@barbadostoday.bb

21 Responses to New threat

  1. David Brathwaite February 8, 2018 at 12:30 am

    What else worse are we going to hear concerning this awful south coast mess? The actions are illegal and dangerous to the environment and can have long term consequences, but people are obviously desperate. The efforts of the BWA have come to nought, and the Prime Minister’s indifference ia appalling.

    It is absolutely no excuse that other countries have sewerage problems. This is our country and the government was warned about the impending problem three years ago by Patricia Inniss and then in Parliament by Mia Mottley. Their response was to laugh it off.

    When the s**t started bubbling up in 2016, the two stupid ministers went for a sea bathos Worthing Beach to “prove” that it wasn’t sewerage.

    How much more can Barbados endure at the hands of this incompetent and uncaring bunch of morons masquerading as a government?

    Reply
    • hcalndre February 9, 2018 at 7:51 am

      Well said David, the PM probably can`t take the sh—t, so he did not go there for a photo-op. Right on Donovan, where have the swimmers gone?

      Reply
  2. Richard Johnston February 8, 2018 at 2:41 am

    Desperate people do desperate things.

    Reply
  3. James Franks February 8, 2018 at 4:24 am

    Probably the final straw as regards tourism on the South Coast,particularly once beautiful Worthing.

    Reply
  4. Tony Webster February 8, 2018 at 5:42 am

    Pride? Industry? DEM Mekkin’ joke and mock-sport…and WE shall have to clean up dem mess thru mo’ taxe$$$$$$. Interviewed by the media yesterday , the BWA rep. was soiling his pants trying to escape giving any number, any estimate, as to how much has been spent already…not to even think about hummuch it will cost to effect a permanent solution.

    Flush DEM.

    Reply
  5. Sheron Inniss February 8, 2018 at 6:35 am

    2 wrongs will never make a right. This is so sad. Do these people really understand how they are destroying Barbados? The administration and fed ups?

    Reply
    • harry turnover February 8, 2018 at 7:25 am

      Those people lives ARE BEING DESTROYED ..you alright to talk because you ARE NOT EXPERIENCING ANYTHING,What you want them to do ? stand there and,get sick and DEAD ? like you looking for good name or something.

      Reply
  6. Buun February 8, 2018 at 7:04 am

    I would like to know how many meetings all the stakeholders had in the last two years to discuss and come up with a solution. I bet over 300 meetings to discuss and still no further.

    Reply
  7. Andrew Simpson February 8, 2018 at 8:06 am

    Where is the accepted location for disposal of sewage, preferably a location away from the water sensitive zones and somewhere that it can be mechanically processed (mixed with sargassum and other organic matter) for use in a soil amendment?
    Regenerating wastes to remediate lands for growing biomass crops which are intended for use in the generation of electricity from renewable sources (to save valuable foreign exchange) would probably be a good idea, starting from now.

    Reply
  8. Robert MacDonald February 8, 2018 at 8:30 am

    The BWA official admits dumping sewage into the swamp is illegal and is going to do something? I know what I would do disconnect the pipes at their source. Whoever did this illegal pumping then would have to deal with the consequences.

    Reply
    • David Brathwaite February 8, 2018 at 10:21 am

      Robert, you seem totally insensitive to these people’s plight.

      Their health and maybe their lives are in danger, and some are losing their livelihood.

      It’s such an awful quandary, brought on by the incompetence of an administration that could have addressed this issue at least three years ago; long before it got out of hand.

      Reply
      • Kenneth McGill February 8, 2018 at 12:53 pm

        It is sad for all, the people of the south coast and the nature of Barbados.

        Reply
    • straight talk February 8, 2018 at 8:40 pm

      And Robert when you disconnect thee pipe what would happen after that or what would be your next step??

      Reply
    • hcalndre February 9, 2018 at 7:57 am

      @Robert MacDonald, where should they really dump the sh—?

      Reply
  9. Sherlock Holmes. February 8, 2018 at 10:52 am

    This situation is getting crappier and crappier day by day and no plausible solution seems to be in sight. What has become of the Barbados water authority, PR Guru? Not a word within recent. I guess the crap has got her tongue.

    Reply
  10. sticks and stones February 8, 2018 at 2:00 pm

    Who de hell would build a sewer system so close in proximity to an area which is protected by the Ramsar agreements

    Reply
  11. luther thorne February 8, 2018 at 3:44 pm

    BWA PR can only tallk
    She cannot fix anything.
    And people seem to put a premium on TALK.
    TALK CHEAP

    Reply
  12. luther thorne February 8, 2018 at 3:46 pm

    THE GOVT cannot escape blame in this one.

    Reply
  13. luther thorne February 8, 2018 at 3:56 pm

    The decision of the DLP to prolong the agony by not calling Elections is unconscionable. It is a wicked act to claim the 90 days when there are no extenuating circumstances that cannot withstand elections. WICKED WICKED WICKED- NASTINESS

    Reply
  14. sticks and stones February 8, 2018 at 4:04 pm

    Designated area to consider as an area protected by the Ramsar agreement should have sent a red flag as a non considerable area to proposed such a project
    Those in charge of forwarding such a proposal could only have done so through the lens of political motives

    Reply
  15. hcalndre February 9, 2018 at 12:43 pm

    I saw a letter to the Nation paper , “Skinning the bajan cat.” blaming the US for letting their citizens know not to drink the water because Barbados voted against the removal of their Embassy to Jerusalem is their way of getting back of Barbados, what a joke.

    Reply

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