Clearing of mangroves and garbage dumping in southern Ambergris Caye lagoon raise concerns
Over the past several weeks' residents south of San Pedro Town have observed large areas of mangroves being cleared bit by bit, while tons of sargassum and loads of garbage are dumped into the lagoon with the apparent purpose of filling the wetland habitat into land. The area in question is west of the Mosquito Coast area, near the WASA Lagoon, where it is rumoured a sub-division is intended. Not only are residents concerned about the wildlife being dispersed in the area but are also concerned with the health hazards that come with the illegal dumping of trash that can affect the environment and people living nearby.
The area is now littered with dead mangrove trees and huge piles of rotting sargassum that is being spread into the lagoon. A road that a couple of months ago was not there, is being expanded over the lagoon, made from what appears to be dirt and sargassum. On its shoulders, it appears that lots are beginning to be shaped, filled with sargassum and garbage, including plastics and other hazardous materials. Residents in the area believe that if a subdivision is being planned, there should be proper inspection of the area and an EIA should be conducted to ensure the area is suitable for living. They believe that putting people to live in the wrong area can jeopardize their safety and more importantly health, essentially creating another community like San Mateo, which is built on garbage-filled mangrove habitat and no infrastructure.Click here to read the rest of the article in the San Pedro Sun