The government of Saint Lucia is concerned about what Sustainable Development Minister Shawn Edward described in parliament on Tuesday as a ‘pollution scourge’, including marine and plastic litter.
Edward acknowledged that clean-up campaigns are necessary.
But he asked whether it would not be fantastic if the nation could transition towards compliance, behavioural change, and enhanced waste management while depending less on clean-ups.
“Do we have hope? Well, I have hope and we should have hope. I know that our people want to do better and can do better and this government, Mr. Speaker, is committed to the cause of curing the pollution scourge that confronts us today,” the Dennery North MP declared.
“I cringed in my own community Mr. Speaker when I saw the plastic accumulation following the heavy rains,” Edward recalled.
In addition, the Minister observed that, too often, Saint Lucians assert that in their inappropriate waste disposal, they are creating jobs for the poor and disadvantaged.
However, Edward said such inappropriate behaviour creates homelessness and loss of livelihood when the trash clogs the drains, flooding homes, and shops.
“The situation we are contributing to is one of poverty, revenue loss from visitors who are disgusted with the imprudent behaviour and opt for cleaner touristic destination,” the Minister told parliament.