Letter to Hon. Tobias Clemen

Posted by at 1 October, at 11 : 45 AM Print

Letter to Hon. Tobias Clemen

clement

September 21st, 2013

Hon. Tobias Clement

Member of Parliament

North-east St. George’s

 

Greetings Hon. Clement!

Re Protection of the Tyrell Bay Mangrove and Oyster Bed

Earlier this week, I had the opportunity of attending the launch of Reef Guardian Program by the Grenada Marine Parks Authority (GMPA).  Those of us who attended the launch witnessed the public pledge by the members of the North East Farmers Organization to become guardians of the nation’s reefs, particularly those in the area spanned by the Molinere- Beausejour Marine Protected Area.    The Reef Guardian Program is a partnership between Grenada’s GMPA and the Authority of the Great Barrier Reef of Australia, supported by Australia Agency for International Development (AusAID).

Of course, such an occasion would not be complete without the presence and speeches of the political decision makers including the Member of Parliament for the area.  So it was that I had the opportunity to listen to you.  Your remarks followed those made by your fellow Carriacouian, Ms. Bernadette Lendore-Sylvester, the current Permanent Secretary responsible for Fisheries and Forestry.  I was literally “bowled over” by what I heard from you so I took copious notes:

  • Importance of the Environment:  You informed your audience that Ms. Bernadette Lendore-Sylvester, was your first Geography teacher and she had instilled in you the importance of the environment.
  • Protecting the Environment for Future Generations:  You advised those of us listening of the importance of protecting the environment and,  in this case, the reef resources, not only for the present generation (our generation) but also for our children and grandchildren.
  • Expansion of Awareness Programs:  You spoke of the need to expand the awareness programs such as the Reef Guardians program.
  • Appeal to AusAID:   You made a not so subtle appeal to the representatives of the Australian program.  You encouraged the Australian government to give Grenada more help so that “WE CAN PROTECT THE LITTLE WE HAVE”.
  • Appeal to Change Habits:  You challenged everyone to “do all within our power to change our habits” and concluded by AGAIN emphasizing the importance of protecting the country’s resources for our children’s and grandchildren’s FUTURE.

I found it very IRONIC Hon. Clement that you should be “saying all the right things” with such eloquence and even appealing for more assistance to “protect the little we have” while, in your little Carriacou, the Land of Reefs, the administration of which YOU are a part is facilitating the degradation and destruction of the resources of the Sandy Island Oyster Bed Marine Protected Area by the ill-advised EXPANSION of the Tyrell Bay Marina.  Persons in adjoining communities can boast of belonging to families whose livelihoods, for FIVE GENERATIONS, have been supported by the Tyrell Bay and Oyster Bed area – supporting your observations of the importance of protecting the nation’s natural resources for present and future generations.   This project has already wreaked significant damage to the Tyrell Bay Mangrove and Oyster Bed ecosystem in the first phase.

Hon. Clement, how can you look the Australian representatives in the eye and appeal for more assistance to “protect the little we have” when in fact the actions of your administration seems hell bent on DESTROYING what we have already sought to protect by declaring the area a Marine Protected Area?  Were you at the launch of the EXPANSION of the Tyrell Bay Marina Project which is encroaching into the Sandy Island Oyster Bed Marine Protected Area?  Did you have the opportunity to make any remarks and what did you say then?

Clearly, Hon. Clement, you seem to understand the issues.  You have said the right things.  Now Hon. Clement, the challenge is yours to put words in to action and use your influence to ARREST the destruction being wrought upon the TyrellBay and Oyster Bed of the Sandy Island Oyster Bed MPA.

Kind regards!

 

Sandra C.A. Ferguson

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