Cedar Tree Point

An aerial view of mangroves cleared at Cedar Tree Point

An aerial view of mangroves cleared at Cedar Tree PointThe Environmental Impact Study recently carried out on this proposed development of 15 bungalows, a clubhouse and beach bar on 21 acres of land – close to the Bird Sanctuary, the natural wetlands and the Lagoon Ramsar site – has now begun to raise significant concerns among tourism specialists outside of Barbuda, especially as the findings of this study have not been released to the public. Council Chairman Arthur Nibbs who approved the project and presumably has seen the study, said that the disposal of waste, its proximity to the beach and beach erosion are the only issues!

In a letter to the Observer on May 15th the developer Mr Francois Petit states that he has ‘invested a lot of money in our Barbudan friends’ and lists USD $150,000 for a hotel, USD $30,000 for a bakery, USD$ 10,000 for a restaurant, USD$90,000 for two boats, repairs to Government House (???) USD$43,000 – the list goes on…

There has still not been any village meeting to seek the consent of the majority of the people of Barbuda, the ones who didn’t receive money for this project, although extensive work removing protected mangroves has already been carried out on site. With hundreds of acres potentially available on other perfectly good and already developed areas of beachfront land (such the fantastic beach from Coco Point to River and all the way to Palmetto) it appears as if a developer can just point to any area of Barbuda and some members of Council will give it to them, regardless of the destruction of the natural environment. This is not sustainable development – these people must raise their awareness – we should be protecting these areas, and most visitors to Barbuda agree and will see for themselves the spurious ‘eco-credentials’ of this hotel.

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