PM Establishes Project Team to Examine Negril Beach Erosion


Prime Minister Bruce Golding, has set up a project team, headed by Minister of State for Project Implementation in the Office of the Prime Minister, Daryl Vaz, to examine appropriate solutions to the beach erosion problems now threatening sections of the Negril coastline.
The team will be anchored by the National Environment and Planning Agency (NEPA), and will include other members drawn from various agencies in Negril, including coastal engineer consultants Smith Warner International, Negril Coral Reef Preservation Society, the Negril Chamber of Commerce, the Negril Chapter of the Jamaica Hotel and Tourist Association and the Negril Chamber of Commerce.
The decision to set up the project team was taken on Friday (Dec 5), when a delegation led by Member of Parliament for Westmoreland Western, Dr Wykeham McNeil, met with Prime Minister Bruce Golding, Minister Vaz, representatives of the Ministry of Tourism and NEPA.
During the meeting the Negril representatives outlined their concerns to the Prime Minister. According to Managing Director of Smith Warner International, David Smith, over the past 2-3 decades the Negril beach has been eroding at a rate of about one metre per year. There are numerous causes, including water quality, excessive development, over -fishing and the die-off of coral reef communities.
He said a study had been undertaken and a number of structural interventions were recommended that would halt the erosion and restore the beach. The recommendations include a multi-phased approach including beach nourishment followed by construction of reef reinforcing structures.
Minister Vaz is to set up a meeting of the team members to look at the recommendations being made on how to cauterise the erosion problem and to help identify the funds.

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