Fri 12th Nov 2010

Stop the environmental rape of Canouan and SVG

SVG Green Party calls on the management of Canouan Resort Development (CRD) to pay very close attention to the SVG 1912 Crown Lands Act. It specifically concludes that the government in SVG is not a direct landowner, but holds the land in trust for the people of SVG.

The legitimacy of the NDP regime's sale of crown lands in Canouan to CRD is highly questionable, and more importantly, can be successfully challenged in SVG High Court, as the people of SVG were never consulted, nor approved the sale of lands to CRD.

CRD-type foreign enclaves are bad for and disrespectful to Vincentians. For example, a notice at the CRD entrance excludes Vincentians. Vincentians being excluded in their own country is unacceptable.

For the best interests of Canouan, this luxury hotel construction should stop as it will cause long-term damage and water shortages. Furthermore, we have not seen any customs duties and other taxes paid to the SVG Treasury. Vincentians must pay tax. Why not CRD? This is unfair and immoral.

It is quite clear to the people of SVG, that the excavation work on the hill overlooking Godahl Beach for a 28 suite boutique, ultra-luxury hotel, is nothing less than environmental rape. It will be an environmental disaster for Canouan and SVG as a whole.

Canouan is becoming the disaster experienced in Fiji. In Fiji, they cut down thousands of trees and built tourist resorts. The problem was when it rained, there were no trees to filter and slow the flow of the rainwater.

In Fiji, mass tourism was the problem. The resorts had a major impact on the fragile ecology of the coast. They used more fresh water, and generated more waste water than all the villages around them, with a corresponding impact on the coral reefs. Huge quantities of untreated waste water from the hotels killed the coral reefs.

As there were few trees, the run-off water, laden with silt, agricultural fertilizers, animal and human waste, was highly enriched with nutrients, encouraging the growth of algae which smothered and killed the coral. The coral reefs used to act as fish nurseries. As the corals disappeared so did the fish. Fiji's coral reef is now known as Fiji's 'dead' reef.

Water is essential to all life. It brings good harvests, health, prosperity, food security and ecological abundance.

A Green government will protect and preserve the environment of our beloved country. We will use the SVG 1912 Crown Lands Act to stop the environmental rape of Canouan and SVG, to ensure the people of Canouan and SVG have a secure source of fresh drinking water.

See website for 'Running Dry' film about water scarcity and how bad life is for people with little water.

Vincentians, vote against these mass tourism projects. They destroy our environment and only produce low-paid, part-time. No point having a low paid, part-time job if you have no fresh drinking - you won't live long enough to collect your wages.

Mass tourism will kill SVG. Killing coral reefs, kills the fishing industry and what any tourist may want to see. Mass tourism is a circle of self-destruction. Like a dog chasing its own tail, it goes nowhere, and in the long-term, achieves nothing.

'Because if you destroy the forests, the rivers will stop flowing and the rains will become irregular and the crops will fail and you will die of hunger and starvation' 2004 Nobel Peace Prize Winner, Kenyan Professor, Wangari Maathai

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