Category Archives: Sugar

US Ambassador to Barbados, 2006: Owen Arthur’s sugar decision “defies logic and sours prudent budget”

Barbados EU Sugar Aid

Sugar is over, finished…

With the recent revelation that the Government-owned Barbados Agricultural Management Company left 1000 acres of cane to rot in the fields – and that our country’s total 2015 sugar harvest might not reach even 10,000 tonnes, BFP re-blogs this post.

It’s time to leave sugar behind. It is a deep, dark hole that sucks money and energy from this nation. None of our children will cut cane or pick cotton, and the cost of Barbados sugar production is the highest in the world.

It’s over folks. It’s over.

Almost ten years ago, BFP asked Prime Minister Owen Arthur about his plan for sugar…

Remind me… what was the Barbados government plan to replace the sugar revenues?

Oh ya… I remember now…

1/ Beg the Europeans for money – playing upon white man’s guilt.

2/ Sell the rest of the island to foreigners.

Ya… good plan, Owen!

Barbados Free Press

“Instead of pouring more money into sugar, the Government of Barbados would be better served letting the industry die a peaceful death, as St. Kitts did in 2005.”

“This massive investment in the sugar industry defies logic and sours an otherwise prudent budget.”

“Sugar is so intrinsic to their national identity, however, that Barbadian taxpayers apparently support this fiscal profligacy.”

Mary Kramer, US Ambassador to Barbados, January 27, 2006

WikiLeaks just released a massive new treasure trove of US Embassy Bridgetown previously secret cables.

We’re looking at many of them in our article WikiLeaks: Massive release of Barbados US Embassy documents. You can help too by going to WikiLeaks Embassy Bridgetownpage and digging in!

But we’re going to post this cable on its own because it makes for very interesting reading.

Considering our current economic situation, Barbados Labour Party supporters will jump right on this cable as vindication…

View original post 2,096 more words

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Filed under Barbados, Economy, Sugar

Sheri Veronica – As school children in Barbados we were taught to hate Jamaicans

Sheri Veronica Barbados

“Respect Jamaicans”

by Sheri Veronica

THE TRUTH IS, we were taught to hate JAMAICANS.  As a little girl in primary school, our teacher taught us that Barbados was the jewel of the Caribbean.  We were taught that any mad/crazy slave or any slave who could not take instructions, were shipped off to Jamaica.  This was the mandate, I supposed in my little head (or was that taught to me also), of every Caribbean island.  Send the mad and **aggressive slaves to Jamaica.  Then as time passed and you start to see clearer, meet people and question things, you soon realize that the insurgent slaves were the brave ones.  They were the men and women who could not be broken…

… continue with a good read at Sheri Veronica’s blog

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Filed under Africa, Barbados, Culture & Race Issues, History, Jamaica, Race, Slavery, Sugar

Bajans pick cotton, cut sugar cane twenty years from now? Let’s get real!

Does Barbados really have a cotton industry?

Cotton industry ‘revamp’ same talk we’ve heard for 40 years

submitted by Bleeding Hands

Barbados takes pride in our educated population and in our status as an ‘almost’ developed nation. The recent economic setbacks might have pushed us back a step or two, but this is a worldwide phenomena not exclusive to our country. Bajans should be proud of what we have achieved together in the last four decades.

One of the social changes brought about by our development and increased education, however, is that few if any of our young people aspire to jobs or business ownership in agriculture and especially not in agricultural sectors reminiscent of the plantation era of our history. If one could grow tomatoes or other food crops and make a decent living that is one thing: sugar and cotton are another world entirely in the minds of bajans and for good reason. Aside from the unprofitable nature of the those two crops, sugar and cotton have historical baggage that young bajans want nothing to do with and I cannot blame them.

Despite the unemployment on this island, Barbados has to import labour from other countires to work our sugar and cotton industries. That is because our population rejects the work, and they reject it because they have been conditioned to reject it – and also it pays nothing or next to nothing. Continue reading

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Filed under Agriculture, Barbados, Cotton, Economy, Sugar

Bajan-Brit author Andrea Stuart: Britain still in denial about British slavery

UPDATED: August 10, 2012 – Andrea Stuart’s book now listed for sale

To be the descendant of Barbadian slaves and white British sugar plantation owners is an extraordinary legacy, for it means that one side of your family once owned the other. But that is the strange inheritance that Andrea Stuart discovered when she began to investigate her family history…

Read a new account in Mail Online and purchase Sugar in the Blood: A family’s story of Slavery and Empire

“I think that in Britain there’s still a degree of denial or an unwillingness to really confront the back story of British slavery and so on. So there’s a sense of it being something that happened sometime a long time ago in some far away place, rather than realizing that the British colonies were, at that point, Britain, that they were British territories and the connection between the colonies and Britain is incredibly intimate. Not something that happened far away and a long time ago, but something that happened in Britain in the world of British life and something that still has repercussion today, and I think that’s the thing that, as a culture, Britain hasn’t quite come to terms with.” Continue reading

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Filed under Barbados, Culture & Race Issues, History, Slavery, Sugar

You can’t make a meal out of Barbados sugar. What fools we are.

Our old friend Colin Beadon posted the following lament about our agricultural failures in our Open Discussion section early Saturday morning. Colin’s post came just as we were reading comments from the US Ambassador to Barbados that our government’s support of sugar “defies logic.”

Here’s the thing, folks… We can’t profitably grow sugar cane for any purpose, whether for foreign or domestic sale, for food products or fuel. We used to do it, but the world changed and we can’t do it now. We’ve shown we can no longer do it.

But we can take that land and commit to growing foods that we can eat and market profitably. Food and water are in some ways, the new oil. (Photo by Shona)

Here’s what Colin had to say…

What utter Fools we are.

On the BBC 26th August.

” If you want to do well in coming times, become a farmer. For the best Expectations, go Far East.”

The number one growing problem in the world, is fast becoming one of Food. There seems to be a little staggering towards this realization in Barbados, at last, that something must be done with agriculture in a big way. There are those of us who have been constantly screaming about it, but our voices are now hoarse, and age has taken away our insistence.

But ”One day, one day, Congotay. That’s what the old people say.” Will the true revival of Barbadian agriculture come too late? Will we really ever start eating our own grown and raised food again, where we have control of what pesticides and what forms of fertilizers we use ?

There are so many great farmers, all over the world, suffering war, and drought, and all forms of persecution, and here we have land, going to useless waste, with good rainfall, and mostly mild conditions, and we have to import 90% of our food requirements. What utter fools, fools, fools we are.

Colin Beadon

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Filed under Agriculture, Barbados, Sugar

US Ambassador to Barbados, 2006: Owen Arthur’s sugar decision “defies logic and sours prudent budget”

“Instead of pouring more money into sugar, the Government of Barbados would be better served letting the industry die a peaceful death, as St. Kitts did in 2005.”

“This massive investment in the sugar industry defies logic and sours an otherwise prudent budget.”

“Sugar is so intrinsic to their national identity, however, that Barbadian taxpayers apparently support this fiscal profligacy.”

Mary Kramer, US Ambassador to Barbados, January 27, 2006

WikiLeaks just released a massive new treasure trove of US Embassy Bridgetown previously secret cables.

We’re looking at many of them in our article WikiLeaks: Massive release of Barbados US Embassy documents. You can help too by going to WikiLeaks Embassy Bridgetown page and digging in!

But we’re going to post this cable on its own because it makes for very interesting reading.

Considering our current economic situation, Barbados Labour Party supporters will jump right on this cable as vindication for Owen Arthur’s financial expertise. Aside from the sugar criticism, Ambassador Kramer gives a glowing report of Prime Minister Owen Arthur.

I don’t know about you, but I think that Ambassador Kramer was correct about our sugar industry: we might as well throw money into the sea than to keep flogging that dead horse.

Some quotes and then the full cable after the break…

What US Ambassador Kramer thought of Owen S. Arthur and his January 16, 2006 budget

“1. (SBU) Summary:  Barbados Prime Minister Owen Arthur presented his government’s 2006 economic and financial policies in a January 16 speech to parliament.  PM Arthur pledged to lower energy costs, cut taxes, boost pensions, and prop up manufacturing.  Most of the budget seems practical and will not greatly increase the country’s debt (around 88.0 percent of GDP).  The only major imprudent expenditure is a US$150 million investment into the island’s unprofitable sugar industry.  End Summary.”

With the parliamentary opposition in disarray (septel), a confident PM Arthur announced tax cuts, incentives to reduce energy costs, increased government investment in the sugar industry, loosened foreign exchange controls, and investment incentives.”

“4. (U) Barbados has prudently kept its government spending in check over the past few years, and Arthur said the fiscal deficit for the 2005-2006 fiscal year (ending in March 2006) will likely be just 1.7 percent of GDP, less than the target of 2.5 percent of GDP.”

“7. (SBU) According to a senior Bajan official, PM Arthur, an economist by training, cloisters himself away from his officefor several weeks to focus on the national budget, even refusing to meet high level visitors.  (Note:  General Craddock of SOUTHCOM visited during Arthur’s budget preparations and the Prime Minister declined to meet with the General.  End Note.)

8. (SBU) At the Embassy’s Martin Luther King Jr. reception, Dr. Marion Williams, Governor of the Central Bank, hinted to EconOff that she did not agree with many of the Prime Minister’s measures to liberalize foreign exchange controls.”

“Wasting Money on Sugar
———————-

9. (U) PM Arthur announced plans for a US$150 million facility including a 30 megawatt power plant and sugar cane processing facilities…

… Even at 523.7 Euros/ton, Barbados loses money on every ton of sugar it exports.  According to Erskine Griffith, the Barbados Minister of Agriculture, the Barbados yield ratio of 21 tons of sugar per acre of sugar cane is, “the lowest of any sugar producing nation.”  Griffith went on to say that producers in Brazil get up to 80 tons per acre…

…(Note: Guyanese sugar products are also imported in large quantities
to produce “Barbadian” rum.  End Note.)  Barbados cannot protect its local sugar market from CARICOM competition, given the free movement of goods provisions of the CARICOM Single Market and Economy.  The government apparently will depend on nationalism to induce people to pay twice as much for local sugar as imported sugar…

11. (SBU) This massive investment in the sugar industry defies logic and sours an otherwise prudent budget.  The cost of producing sugar on a small island with high labor costs and limited mechanization is astronomically higher than in Brazil or other major sugar producers.  Barbados is probably
one of the least efficient sugar producers in the world and cannot compete within CARICOM, much less on the world market.”

“Instead of exporting bulk sugar to the European Union at inflated prices, Barbados will be selling its sugar domestically at inflated prices.  Sugar is so intrinsic to their national identity, however, that Barbadian taxpayers apparently support this fiscal profligacy.

12. (SBU) The true purpose of the US$150 million investment is not to protect the environment or to reduce energy costs, but to give sugar a future.  If Barbados were serious about protecting the environment and reducing its energy import bill, then the country could more cheaply accomplish both these goals by importing sugar cane ethanol from Brazil.

No matter what use for sugar cane Barbados comes up with, almost every other sugar producing country can grow it cheaper, harvest it cheaper, and process it cheaper.  Instead of pouring more money into sugar, the Government of Barbados would be better served letting the industry die a peaceful death, as St. Kitts did in 2005.  End Comment.”

FULL CABLE Continue reading

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Filed under Barbados, Politics, Sugar

Are these Barbados plantations still receiving an agriculture rebate on their Land Tax?

Sugar cane was once like gold or oil

To our knowledge, each of the following plantations are not in any meaningful agricultural production, or have been given over to housing or commercial activities. Are they still receiving an agricultural rebate on their land taxes?

Exchange Plantation, St Thomas
Alleynedale Plantation, St Peter Continue reading

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Filed under Agriculture, Barbados, Sugar

Jamaican drug gangs, failed sugar economies and cheap worldwide tourism: Globalization has not been kind to the Caribbean

UPDATED: August 31, 2011

Our current article about the Barbados Tourism Authority Deputy Director, Austin Husbands, telling folks to keep quiet about bad beaches and environmental problems reminded one of our readers of this past post.

Thanks to reader “J” and yes, we think this story is worth another read…

Caribbean’s “special privileges” disappearing as our former Colonial masters push “Globalization”

Three of our readers alerted us to a newspaper article by Jorge Heine, co-author (with Ramesh Thakur) of the forthcoming book: The Dark Side of Globalization.

Although Mr. Heine focuses on the Jamaican gang situation to make his current newspaper article topical, he makes some interesting big-picture points – one of which is that our former Caribbean Colonial masters built their countries on our backs and our sugar economy. When the sugar money dried up they gave us, or agreed to, our “freedom” and “independence”. Of course our populations bought into “independence” at the time. Tourism was good and our former masters sweetened the pot with some special agreements to help our economies along.

For a time.

Now that time of “special help and consideration” is over as the new religion of Globalization (or Globalisation) becomes the mantra.

DLP & BLP politicians at work

Sadly, it can rightfully be said that for the most part our own leadership squandered over 40 years of what could have been. The BLP and DLP thought the good times would never end… or perhaps they knew the money would end and that’s why both parties adopted a piggies-at-the-trough style of government when in power.

Over the years Barbados begged for and received hundreds of millions in sugar and other subsidies, grants and forgivable loans from Britain, the USA and the EU. Did we diversify our economy? Did our leaders show fiscal restraint and prioritize spending? Did we build a good foundation of water, sewer and health care infrastructure?

Nope… we had half-a-billion dollar cricket parties while old women still carried water from the standpipe. We ended up hiring unqualified Nigerian nurses because the supply of British and North American nurses wanting to work in the tropical paradise of Barbados dried up when the toilets stopped flushing and surgical gloves became a rare commodity at the Queen Elizabeth Hospital. Continue reading

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Filed under Barbados, Barbados Tourism, Corruption, Crime & Law, History, Jamaica, Political Corruption, Politics, Politics & Corruption, Slavery, Sugar

EU European Union Gives Millions To Barbados In Foreign Aid… Barbados Citizens Not Allowed To Ask For Spending Details

Thompson Foreign Aid

Thanks To Europe For The $28 Million Spare Change!

Hey… What Happened To The Last $10 Million EU Sugar Grant?

We can’t find anything in the local papers about yesterday’s occasion of Barbados receiving another EU handout – this one for Bds$28 million.The Barbados Government Information Service published the story Barbados Signs Agreement With EU, and it was picked up word for word by South Florida Caribbean News (link here).

But even if the news media does carry the story, the announcement of the gift will be the last that we’ll hear about it. For some reason the Barbados news media never does any follow up to see how, when and if such foreign aid funding is ever spent in the manner that is announced when everyone sits around the table smiling and congratulating themselves on scoring another few million from foreign governments.

We will not belabour our point, but let us briefly consider the following…

– Successive Barbados governments have positioned Barbados as an international beggar – all the while squandering hundred of millions of dollars in foreign aid without visible results or readily apparent benefit to the people of Barbados.

– When the European Union finally insisted upon accountability for aid in 2006, then PM Owen Arthur and Agriculture Minister Erskine Griffith went public talking about callous “colonial” attitudes shown by the European Union. The BLP government raised such a fuss that the EU threw in the towel and provided the money without insisting on any real accountability. (See BFP’s article Secret European Union Reports Slam Barbados Ethanol Plan.)

– Barbados has a proven history of taking foreign aid funding and then failing to fully implement the projects that were being funded under various agreements. Most recently, Barbados had to admit that the Barbados government Anti-Money Laundering Authority acted illegally and without authority for two years. Hey, we took the USA’s aid money to set up the unit and then never did – we only said we did!

– The David Thompson DLP government were elected on their promised commitment to implement Integrity Legislation, Freedom of Information laws, Conflict of Interest rules and a code of conduct for Government ministers. Thompson and the DLP promised IN WRITING to implement the Ministerial Code of Conduct “immediately” upon the DLP taking office in January, 2008. He also promised that the Integrity Legislation and Freedom of Information laws would be implemented within 100 days of taking office.

– Thompson lied about Integrity Legislation, FOI, a Ministerial Code etc. As a result, Barbados politicians and government officials can still legally profit from their position – while the public is denied the right to examine government spending records.

New EU Foreign Aid Not Tied To Specific Projects – Funds Are Dumped Into The General Accounts!

To top it off, the EU has capitulated to demands from the Thompson Barbados Government that foreign aid not be tied to specific projects which can be audited or seen to be accomplished or not.

In his remarks yesterday, Senator Boyce said: “The resources of the Accompanying Measures for Sugar Protocol Countries Initiative 2007-2010 is provided by way of Budget Support rather than direct Project Financing as occurred in previous programmes…”

So the latest EU foreign aid funding is being dumped into the general treasury instead of being directly tied to specific projects capable of being audited. The government has made some promises about “going to do this” and “going to do that”, but without direct funding pathways to specific projects and without Freedom of Information laws to allow the public access to government spending records… that money is already gone, gone, gone.

If you have any doubts about the lack of accountability, just put in a Freedom of Information request to review the government records that document how the last $10 million EU Sugar Subsidy was spent! Just don’t hold your breath while waiting for an answer…

Thompson’s coup is complete. He hasn’t implemented any integrity legislation or conflict of interest rules – and the foreign aid money is being dumped in with the general government accounts.

Well done, David! Not even Owen Arthur was able to accomplish that feat!

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Filed under Barbados, Corruption, Crime & Law, Ethics, Freedom Of Information, Offshore Investments, Political Corruption, Politics, Politics & Corruption, Sugar

Barbados History: How The Quakers Challenged Barbados Slave Owners… And Lost

“The Quaker Community on Barbados”

New Book by Dr Larry Gragg Looks Interesting

Barbados Quakers Slavery

Excerpts from an article about the book…

By the time a census was taken in 1680, some 500 of the 20,000 white people on Barbados were Quakers, Gragg says.

Despite their efforts, the Quakers failed in their experiment to transform the culture of Barbados. By the 1790s, the Quaker presence on that island had vanished. “Many of them simply just moved to Pennsylvania,” Gragg says. Persecution drove others from the island. Many faced arrest for refusing to serve in the militia, not supporting the Church of England, not paying taxes and keeping their stores open on holy days, Gragg says. They also tried to convert slaves, leading to the passage of laws prohibiting the act… (snip)

Ultimately, the Quaker movement on Barbados “ended with a whimper,” Gragg writes.

“They challenged the very powerful plantation power structure and lost,” he says. “It was an extraordinary challenge, but today there’s little evidence that they had much impact. But they did have the local government frightened for two decades.”

“The Quaker Community on Barbados” is Gragg’s second book about the island. His first, titled “Englishmen Transplanted: The English Colonization of Barbados, 1627-1660,” was published in 2003 by Oxford University Press. Gragg says the research he conducted for that book led him to delve into his study of the Quakers on Barbados.

… the above excerpts taken from Missouri S&T article Historian’s new book examines Quaker community of Barbados

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Filed under Barbados, History, Race, Slavery, Sugar

Scottish Sugar Slaves In Barbados vs. African Slave Trade: Do Mr. & Mrs. Bourne Want To Forget or Remember?

The Lady Bourne, President George Washington, Lord Bourne (missing from photo: Escaped slave Oney Judge - owned by George Washington - Reward if returned.

The Lady Bourne, President George Washington, Lord Bourne (missing from photo: Escaped slave Oney Judge - owned by George Washington - Reward if captured.)

George Washington Owned Slaves

Depending upon the source, history records that President George Washington brought seven to nine of his family’s several hundred slaves to New York City in 1789 to work in the first presidential household. One of the presidential slaves was a biracial young lady named Oney Judge – the daughter of Betty, a “negress” slave without a last name, and Andrew Judge, a white English indentured servant at Washington’s Mount Vernon plantation.

When the presidential household moved to Pennsylvania in 1790, Washington illegally had his slaves rotated out of state every so often so they would not be freed under the Gradual Abolition Act – that prohibited non-residents from keeping slaves in Pennsylvania for periods longer than six months and freed slaves after this time.

In summer of 1796, the slave Oney Judge learned that she was to be given away as a present by First Lady Washington to her granddaughter, Eliza Custis. Oney then made up her mind to escape and she did so through the underground railroad and ended up in New Hampshire. You can read about her life and times at Wikipedia’s article on Oney Judge.

Washington_SlaveryWhich is all to remind us that when George Washington visited Barbados in 1751, and until he died in 1799, he owned other human beings as his property. Again, depending upon the source, history records that George and Martha Washington owned several hundred slaves between them. Although he had the power to free his slaves, George Washington did not do so. Even upon his death he only freed one slave, William Lee. The rest were given to his wife for further use.

How Much History Is Too Much? How Little Is Not Enough?

We were intrigued by an article and lively discussion taking place at Ian Bourne’s The Bajan Reporter blog. It seems that when Ian and his wife visited George Washington House in Barbados, they thought the slavery exhibit at the home was a bit overdone and at the same time incomplete in that it did not document the plight of non-African slaves and indentured servants.

See Ian’s thought-provoking piece: George Washington House by Garrison Racetrack: Are all Historical Reminders necessary? Time to let wounds heal – Yankee Bajan’s USA Independence

For our part, we think that Mr. and Mrs. Bourne are right and wrong about the slavery presentation at George Washington House. We think that the home is quite a proper place for a display about slavery – African, white, transported and indentured. But we also agree that for too long historians and Bajans have focused primarily upon the African slave trade to the exclusion of other areas of our slave history.

As an aside, we saw back in May that Planet Barbados published an excellent little piece on the Scots who were “Barbado’ed” as supposedly indentured workers – meaning slaves with a time to serve – but ended up being slaves who were never released. See Planet Barbados: Giving Voice to the Sad History of the “Redlegs” of Barbados.

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Filed under Africa, Barbados, Culture & Race Issues, History, Human Rights, Race, Slavery, Sugar

Barbados Biotechnologist Laments How Island Ways Have Short-Changed Our Economy

Editor’s Note: We don’t think the Daily Nation published this letter by our favourite Bajan biotechnologist, Robert D. Lucas. That is too bad because Mr. Lucas always has something worthwhile to contribute to the discussion.

The Editor
The Daily Nation
Bridgetown, Barbados

Dear Sir/Madam,

There has been plenty of talk in this country in the past about the need to modernize the sugar industry. This talk has been centered mainly, on the need to develop fiber cane and the manufacture of ethanol as a fuel.  I have on numerous occasions, in the past, pointed out the need to improve the yield of alcohol and have stated that, the yield of alcohol is a limiting factor, in the economic production of rum and fuel. This limitation arises, owing to the fact that, alcohol is a toxic by-product of yeast fermentation of molasses.

I have also suggested that the following be done to surmount this problem.

1). Selective pressure, whereby the yeasts are exposed to increasing concentrations of alcohol in the growth media, above the normal threshold level which has been found to be toxic to them.

2). Mutation of the organisms using chemicals or radiation as mutagenic sources.

3). genetically modifying the organisms.

I have also in the past stated that, in the case of rum production, favor profile analysis would be needed to ensure that, no deviation from the acquired taste or flavor takes place.

Additionally, I have pointed out that, the modified yeast can be used as a cheap alternative for the high cost protein which is currently used in the formulation animal rations: either as a by-product of the rum industry or by using a one–step procedure utilizing cellulose as the fermentation substrate (which I have proposed and outlined to the current Minister of Agriculture). All of this has been proposed by me for the last twenty-two years.

It has all fallen on deaf ears. It has been recently reported (Locke.S.F. 2008. Discover. (September) Page 12) that workers at MIT have commenced work on the genetically modifying yeast to increase the yield of alcohol. It has also been recently reported that J. Craig Venter has turned his attention to developing a one-step procedure for cellulose. Knowing this society, one can predict with a high degree of certainty that, no attempt will now be made to modify the yeast.

It is safe to say that, the local industry will opt to purchase the improved yeast. Of course, there is nothing to stop the MIT workers from inserting a-terminator gene sequence in the yeast genome that results in self-destruction of the yeast when a certain concentration of either alcohol or some other chemical in the fermenting substrate is attained.  It would be fitting if this were done; foreign exchange would have to expend after each batch of rum is made. There is a saying, “ Where there is no vision, the people perish.” This  is an apt description of the policy makers in this country and particularly those in the Ministry of Agriculture.

Sincerely

Robert D. Lucas, Ph.D.
Food biotechnologist.

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Filed under Barbados, Sugar, Technology

Barbados Government Kills Ethanol Proposal – Bizzy Williams Should Read BFP To Find Out Why He Was Turned Down

Any man of Bizzy's age who can party until 8am has our respect!

Any man of Bizzy's age who can party until 8am has our respect!

Chairman of Williams Industries, Ralph “Bizzy” Williams, says he is “disappointed” that permission was not granted to build an ethanol plant. He told the Midweek Nation in a telephone interview on Monday that he did not know why the project was denied…

… from the Nation article Letdown for Bizzy

The Arthur/Mottley BLP Government Pushed Ethanol For Corrupt Reasons

Everybody knows that Bizzy is a good business person and a decent human being. He and his family have worked hard and smart over the years to the point where Williams Industries and associated companies provide employment directly and indirectly for thousands of people. But business and making money is not all that defines Bizzy Williams.

Without going into details, we at BFP can assure you that Bizzy has a kind heart and does much good for people in a quiet manner. It is his way to help with a “hand up, not a hand out” and there are many who have benefited from his encouragement, mentoring and interest in helping people improve themselves and their lives. Once again, we can’t say much more than that, but some folks would be amazed if they knew ten percent of what Bizzy has done for ordinary people.

That’s Some Of The Good About Bizzy Williams – Now For Some Of The Bad…

Like all business people, Bizzy and his family tend to make choices that are good for their pocketbooks but might not be so good for the country, the environment and the poor taxpayers. No, we’re not saying that all business people are uncaring slash and burn artists or that the Williams family deliberately sets out to harm the country or people. We are saying that without effective oversight, accountability and the rule of law applied by a good government that is watching out for the citizens’ interests, business people make choices that benefit themselves first and sometimes are against the interests of ordinary citizens.

port-st-charles-barbados-beach

For example, when Bizzy Williams deliberately designed the Port St. Charles development to prevent ordinary Bajans from accessing the beach, he raised the value of the individual condos and made more profit.

Yup… Bizzy designed that delightful north beach area to be a private beach for the rich folks. Oh sure, you can crawl under the bridge and cut your feet all to pieces on the sharp stones and concrete of the breakwater and then arrive at the beach just ahead of the security guards who ask just what you think you’re doing and caution that if you put one foot above the high water mark they will drag your sorry black ass out of there. Yes friends, that is the welcome you’ll receive if you dare to set foot on the sand at Port St. Charles beach.

What should be a public beach. Your beach.

That was a design choice that Bizzy made and it was a darn good choice for raising the prices of the condos and putting more money into his pocket. Private beaches are a big selling point at Port St. Charles – even if they use the word “secluded” instead of “private”.

But that choice is a violation of the spirit of the law, if not the law itself. It is also a very visible and simple example of how the world is run when we let business people do whatever they want. Or when business people are allowed to donate as much money as they want to the governing political party without any rules, transparency or public accountability.

Ask Owen Arthur and Mia Mottley why the BLP government allowed Bizzy Williams to get away with creating a private beach. Don’t hold your breath waiting for an answer!

Why The Barbados Government Killed The Ethanol Projects Favoured By The Previous BLP Government

Dear Bizzy, while your ethanol proposal involved constructing a plant to remove water from imported semi-processed ethanol, it shared many of the faults revealed by the European Union ethanol studies suppressed by the BLP government. There are concerns about the proximity to tourist beaches, potential for major spills, reliance upon copious amounts of already scarce fresh water, and the long-term cost-benefit viability of ethanol as a fuel. Tons and tons and tons – tens of thousands of gallons – of liquid toxic waste will be produced daily should the ethanol factory go ahead.

Not to mention that your proposal did not include a comprehensive environmental impact study or an economic study of the impact your factory would have upon tourism.

For all of those reasons and more, your project was refused.

Here are a few BFP articles you should read…

Barbados Government Kills Sugar Cane Ethanol Scam

Government Insider Thanks Barbados Free Press For Exposing Secret Ethanol Reports

The current Barbados Government has killed plans for a sugar-based ethanol industry – largely due to revelations by Barbados Free Press that the previous BLP government had covered up secret European Union reports showing that the Arthur-Mottley government’s ethanol plans were technically and economically not viable.

We are told that one of the first acts of newly minted Minister of Agriculture Haynesley Benn (photo above) was to ask to see ALL VERSIONS of the European Union sugar reports as first revealed in BFP’s article Secret European Union Reports Slam Barbados Ethanol Plan.

It didn’t take the Thompson Government very long to discover that the ethanol plan was a sham – and most likely just another scam to facilitate the transfer of tax revenues to greedy pockets with no appreciable benefit to Barbados and her citizens.

Our source who originally showed us the three different versions of one of the EU copies of the reports said…

“Thank you Barbados Free Press. Without your revelations the people who were pushing cane ethanol would have taken Barbados down the road to an economic and environmental disaster.”

Our Thanks To The Government Worker Who Risked Everything To Bring The Truth To Bajans

For three years as the mainstream Barbados news media jumped on the Arthur-Mottley Government’s cane ethanol bandwagon, a courageous government employee wrestled with the conflict between loyalty to the BLP government and duty to the people of Barbados. This government employee knew that cane ethanol was not viable for Barbados, and that the Arthur-Mottley government was deliberately concealing data and reports so they could justify a course of action that, according to our source, had the primary purpose of lining the pockets of certain very narrow interests.

By last August, the government employee decided that he must reveal the truth – but how? In the end he came to Barbados Free Press with his story, and the rest as they say, is history. When the new Agriculture Minister asked to see ALL VERSIONS of the secret European Union reports as mentioned in the Barbados Free Press article, that was the end for cane ethanol…

… continue reading this report LINK HERE

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Barbados Government Kills Sugar Cane Ethanol Scam – “Thank You Barbados Free Press. Without Your Revelations…”

Government Insider Thanks Barbados Free Press For Exposing Secret Ethanol Reports

The current Barbados Government has killed plans for a sugar-based ethanol industry – largely due to revelations by Barbados Free Press that the previous BLP government had covered up secret European Union reports showing that the Arthur-Mottley government’s ethanol plans were technically and economically not viable.

We are told that one of the first acts of newly minted Minister of Agriculture Haynesley Benn (photo above) was to ask to see ALL VERSIONS of the European Union sugar reports as first revealed in BFP’s article Secret European Union Reports Slam Barbados Ethanol Plan.

It didn’t take the Thompson Government very long to discover that the ethanol plan was a sham – and most likely just another scam to facilitate the transfer of tax revenues to greedy pockets with no appreciable benefit to Barbados and her citizens.

Our source who originally showed us the three different versions of one of the EU copies of the reports said…

“Thank you Barbados Free Press. Without your revelations the people who were pushing cane ethanol would have taken Barbados down the road to an economic and environmental disaster.”

Our Thanks To The Government Worker Who Risked Everything To Bring The Truth To Bajans

For three years as the mainstream Barbados news media jumped on the Arthur-Mottley Government’s cane ethanol bandwagon, a courageous government employee wrestled with the conflict between loyalty to the BLP government and duty to the people of Barbados. This government employee knew that cane ethanol was not viable for Barbados, and that the Arthur-Mottley government was deliberately concealing data and reports so they could justify a course of action that, according to our source, had the primary purpose of lining the pockets of certain very narrow interests.

By last August, the government employee decided that he must reveal the truth – but how? In the end he came to Barbados Free Press with his story, and the rest as they say, is history. When the new Agriculture Minister asked to see ALL VERSIONS of the secret European Union reports as mentioned in the Barbados Free Press article, that was the end for cane ethanol.

Here is part of what we said in our original story…

Three independent experts hired by the European Union and the Government of Barbados to assist Barbados with the restructuring of the sugar industry were fired when they each produced reports showing that Barbados government ethanol plans are technically and economically not viable. Continue reading

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What Will Become Of Barbados’ Ethanol Project? … Also: Virgin Atlantic To Test Biofuel, Perhaps From Algae

What Will The Current Barbados Government Do With The Cane-Ethanol Project?

First, a reminder that finding new and better energy sources is one of the most critical worldwide problems that we face in this generation. But as scientists and business are discovering, not every alternative fuel makes technological, economic or environmental sense.

This truth that not every alternative fuel source is viable is illustrated by an experiment being conducted by Richard Branson, Boeing and General Electric Aviation…

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Virgin Atlantic said Monday that it would conduct a demonstration flight next month of one of its Boeing 747 jets using biofuel – the first airborne test of a renewable fuel by a commercial jet.

The airline, founded by the British billionaire Richard Branson, said a 747-400 plane would make the journey lasting one hour and 20 minutes from London Heathrow Airport to Amsterdam in late February using 20 percent biofuel and 80 percent conventional jet fuel. The test, without passengers, is part of a joint research project announced by Virgin, Boeing and the aircraft engine maker, GE Aviation.

The airline declined to identify the source of the biofuel, though Paul Charles, a Virgin spokesman, said the carrier had rejected fuels derived from crops like palm oil because of the huge land area that would need to be devoted to cultivation for fuel production.

“It will be a very sustainable fuel source,” Charles said, adding that its production would not compete with food or fresh water resources.

Engineers at Boeing and its European rival, Airbus, estimate that supplying all the airliners in the world with pure soybean-based biofuel would require planting an area the size of Europe. Biofuel researchers have also identified certain varieties of algae as a possible feedstock, noting that they have a much higher energy content than oilseeds and would therefore be far less demanding on the environment.

Boeing estimates that supplying the aviation industry with algae-based fuel would require just 35 square kilometers of ponds and that the algae could even be cultivated in salt water.

Read the entire article at the Herald Tribune link here.

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Is Cane Ethanol A Viable Project For Barbados?

Prime Minister Thompson Should Re-evaluate Everything Started By The Corrupt & Incompetent BLP Government!

Proponents of a Barbados cane-ethanol project point to Brazil as proof that fuel from sugar cane is an economically viable proposition. They don’t like to talk about the huge economies of scale enjoyed by Brazil, or that Barbados might be better off economically to forget about ethanol from cane and instead grow corn for domestic food use.

The rationale for Barbados replacing cane with corn is that as ethanol from corn takes off in the North American market, it will cause a significant increase in the price of food and feed corn. In short, if making ethanol from cane on Barbados is as inefficient and expensive as is becoming apparent, we might be way better off to grow food instead of cane and find other solutions to powering cars and generating electricity.

What we don’t need is another dubious project that requires hundreds of millions of tax dollars for no guaranteed results or return… and we sure don’t need to favour a cane-ethanol project on the basis of an emotional and historical attachment to growing sugarcane.

Continue reading

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Filed under Aviation, Barbados, Energy, Environment, Sugar