Dominica government cracking down on environmental offenders

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Prime Minister Roosevelt Skerrit says improper waste disposal is hurting Dominica’s image as a clean and green island.

 

ROSEAU, Dominica, Wednesday December 23, 2015 – Prime Minister Roosevelt Skerrit has warned that persons who are on the wrong side of environmental conservation will soon feel the full weight of the law.

He said an increasing indifference to Dominica’s image as a clean and green island has led Government to take drastic measures.

“We will be putting more wardens out there and if we have to strengthen legislation or [set up] a night court to prosecute those found afoul of the law, we will do those things,” he said.

“Another thing which we will discuss and engage stakeholders on is the banning of Styrofoam cups and plates and non-biodegradable plastic bags. Very early in January, I will be engaging the stakeholders like the supermarkets, importers, the Dominica Association of Industry and Commerce, the Dominica Hotel and Tourism Association and environmental groups to discuss those issues.”

Skerrit said the war on environmental degradation will take place in consultation with stakeholders, but stressed that the time for talk was over.

“People are dumping indiscriminately, drinking from Styrofoam cups and simply throwing them off the buses and onto the streets. There are bins but instead of using the bins to dump garbage, we kick the bins and damage them,” he said, adding that improper disposal of household waste is something which Government will also not take lightly.

“Why should we have to allow the Solid Waste Corporation to pick up banana peel or leaves from villages where we have large backyards? Why should we put the garbage out on days that we know [haulers] are not coming?”

Skerrit stressed that each person must take personal responsibility for the environment and his administration will be taking the lead to rid the island of the problem which he described as a disease.

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