TWO days after he urged developed nations to honour their commitment to pay $100bn a year by 2020 for climate finance support, the Prime Minister has been asked to announce the establishment of the North Bimini Marine Reserve to protect the island’s unique ecological heritage.
Environmental advocate Lindsey McCoy this week called on the Christie administration to honour this longstanding promise to protect Bimini’s unique ecological heritage, saying there has been no response despite fears that Bimini’s sensitive mangrove forests may be under threat from development.
More than two months have passed since Bimini’s local council sent a letter requesting that Mr Christie honour the North Bimini Marine Reserve (NBMR) promise, which was approved in 2008 and awaits official gazetting.
Mr McCoy, CEO of Save The Bays, added that the government’s failure to respond to the local council has only created fear in Bimini.
“A recently released image showing a golf course located within the NBMR boundaries has caused serious concern among Biminites,” Mr McCoy said.
“This is an area of unparalleled ecological importance, the mangroves providing a nursery for the marine life throughout the northern Bahamas.”
The NBMR is one of several proposed Marine Protected Areas (MPAs) that conservationists want to see established in The Bahamas. An MPA is an area where human activity is placed under clearly defined restrictions in order to protect the marine or terrestrial environment, and often any cultural or historical resources that might exist within its boundaries.
“It must be protected at all costs, and I call on the Prime Minister to respond to the council and immediately grant their requests.” Mr McCoy added.
Mr McCoy said the ball is now in the government’s court – and a continued delay will be interpreted as a sign that the Christie administration is not serious about preserving the country’s priceless environmental resources for future generations of Bahamians.