Daily Archives: January 24, 2009

Barbados Environment Minister Denis Lowe, DLP Government – Plan To Build On Graeme Hall Wetlands

Graeme Hall Wetlands To Be Developed By DLP Campaign Funder CLICO & Leroy Paris

Graeme Hall Wetlands To Be Developed By DLP Campaign Funder CLICO & Leroy Parris

We were sitting around as usual on Friday having a few beers and solving all the world’s problems over a late lunch when Robert asked the question, “Can someone tell me one positive environmental action actually accomplished in the first year of the Thompson administration?”

After some scratching of heads we were unable to come up with one real action that happened. Sure, lots of talk, lots of speeches and promises, but as to a real and positive action – nada.

Now it might be that we at BFP missed something. Perhaps there was some real and substantial environmental action taken by the two environment ministers we’ve seen in the Thompson government so far.

But we’ve been asking DLP supporters for months to please let us know of one real and substantial positive environmental action taken by the DLP government and so far no one has taken the time to write a comment with that information. We know that the government and DLP supporters read this blog, so we have to assume that the answer to our question is evident. Nada. Nothing real and positive has been done with the Environment Ministry and the environment in an entire year.

The Only Action Taken By The DLP Government Has Been To Make It Legal To Build On The Graeme Hall Wetlands!

In fact, if we’re talking environment, the only real and substantial action taken by the Thompson government has been NEGATIVE.

The DLP government ratified the BLP government’s Amended 2003 Physical Development Plan which establishes an “urban corridor” for the Graeme Hall green area seaward of the ABC Highway. This “urban corridor” parcel is well-known, as it was the scene of the infamous Caribbean Splash Water Park application. This is in sharp contrast to the recommendations of the 1986 National Physical Development Plan and the 1997 ARA Barbados Tourism Development Programme Study. It is also contrary to the National Park proposal which recommends the land be used for low-impact family recreation, walking and bicycle trails and other related uses.

The only difference with the DLP government passing this “urban corridor” instead of the BLP government is that now the DLP friends will profit from the move instead of the BLP friends.

Environmentalists also assume that in the minds of many influential government officials and developers, the RAMSAR site where the Graeme Hall Nature Sanctuary resides exists as a 100-year floodplain sump to be used for contaminated stormwater, instead of as a vibrant and living wetland.

Thompson, Lowe & Parris: What’s The Connection?

Despite all the nice words from Environment Minister Denis Lowe and PM Thompson about not turning the south coast into another concrete jungle, both Lowe and Thompson voted for the Amended 2003 Physical Development Plan which establishes an “urban corridor” in the Graeme Hall wetlands. The Thompson – CLICO – Leroy Parris connection is well known and established. After all, one of Thompson’s first official acts as a newly-elected Prime Minister was to “borrow” an executive jet through Leroy Parris and to refuse to provide transparency about the costs of that jet. (See BFP’s Will Rayside Construction Be Awarded Barbados Government Contracts To Thank Leroy Parris For The Use Of The Bizjet?)

And, bye the way… who do you think owns land in the “urban corridor” of the Graeme Hall wetlands? Why, CLICO, thats who!

Yup. Same old, same old ’bout hey.

It looks like Thompson and his CLICO mentor/financier Leroy Parris are going to get their wish to develop and profit from what is one of our last remaining natural treasures.

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