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Sep 1, 2022

New E.I.A. Seeks to Address Key Environmental Concerns

On the phone: Orlando Habet

According to Minister Habet, the resubmitted E.I.A. seeks to address concerns that were raised regarding the previous assessment, where the disposal of dredged material is concerned. The E.I.A., says the Minister of Sustainable Development, will also deal with a request that has been made pertaining to the erection of a retaining wall for material that will be deposited near shore.

 

On the phone: Orlando Habet, Minister of Sustainable Development

“My understanding is, from being briefed by the department, is that the first submission, as you would recall, was the one that was done originally which we inherited coming into government in November of 2020. That proposal was to dump about eight to ten million cubic feet or meters of dredge material closer to the Turneffe and the problem there would have been the impact it would have on the reef, fisheries and everything else. Well, that was turned down immediately, even though the process still required a consultation, and that happened because that was already, they already had a date for that when we got into government. We had to proceed with it, but it was rejected and so they immediately turned that around and sent in that new proposal where they were submitting a proposal where that material now would have been certain percentage that would be near shore, a percentage on shore and a percentage off shore. If you recall late last year, the letter was sent to them saying that based on the submission that they made that they were still deficient in some of the requests that were made by the department and NEAC and that at the time, they did not comply and so the letter stated that they did not get approval at that period in time. The new submission now is one that partly now looks at the entire area and they are reducing the amount of materials that they will put on one side or the other and most of the material will now be near shore which they will use for the construction of the site.  Additionally, I think one of the requests that was made was to provide sort of a retaining wall for that material and now they have submitted it in the new proposal some mechanism that will retain the material that they will be putting near shore.”

 


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