This broken sluice gate is the weapon being used to destroy our last mangrove wetlands
The government-owned and controlled sluice gate should regulate the flow of water in and out of the Graeme Hall mangrove wetlands. When operating properly, it lets the wetlands “breathe” and refresh itself from the sea. It keeps the brackish water (brackish = salt and fresh water mix) at the correct salinity to allow the mangroves, plants and all creatures great and small to thrive.
Without a properly operating sluice gate, the mangrove wetlands die as do many plant and animal species that inhabit the Ramsar-designated Graeme Hall wetlands.
Successive Barbados governments have refused to repair or replace the broken sluice gate for at least 15 years that I know of. Successive Barbados governments have refused offers from the Graeme Hall Nature Sanctuary to repair or replace the sluice gate at the Sanctuary’s cost and operate it under government supervision.
Why would that be?
Why would the Barbados government deliberately refuse to repair or replace the sluice gate for 15 years?
Barbados Free Press suspects that the long term goal of certain persons is to destroy the wetlands so they can then be developed. Graeme Hall would be worth a huge pile of money if developed.
Besides controlling the environmental health of the mangrove wetlands, the sluice gate is also used for flood control – to lower the level of the water during times of heavy rains when the wetlands act as a giant reservoir to prevent flooding of the surrounding area.
Because our government deliberately refuses to repair the sluice gate, the folks responsible for flood control use construction equipment to block the channel with sand – or remove the sand – as needed to control the water level in the wetlands.
As we reported yesterday, the government dug out the sand two days ago for a time to lower the water level and then filled the channel again. (See BFP’s Potential flooding forces Barbados Government to unblock Graeme Hall Wetlands sluice gate)
The photos of the broken sluice gate to the sea and the channel were taken on Wednesday morning and afternoon, May 19, 2010 after the government blocked the channel again with sand. (Big Thanks to three readers who responded to our request for photos!)
Does that sluice gate look high-tech to you? Does it look like there’s a technical reason why it couldn’t have been repaired or replaced 15 years ago? Does it look like rocket science with the latest alloys? Is it made of gold?
I think readers will find it as obvious as we do: the non-repair and non-operational state of the government-owned sluice gate is deliberate.
Once you see the simple truth of these photos, the question becomes Why is our government doing this to OUR last remaining mangrove wetlands?
Click on each photo to view full size (800 x 600).