If you listen to the loud clatter on radio
talk shows and read some of the online comments about the potential closure of
the George Town Landfill and the creation of a new solid waste management
facility just east of Bodden Town, you would think that the majority of Cayman
is against the proposal.
However, polls – albeit unscientific –
conducted by the Caymanian Compass over the past two and a half years
consistently show something else.
Back in July 2010, when an ad hoc
non-governmental organisation known as WISE Cayman was touting a solution to
the landfill problem similar to what has been proposed now, more than 53 per
cent of the respondents of an online poll thought creating a new landfill was
Cayman’s most needed infrastructure project.
In October of 2010, when people were asked
about the best solution to Cayman’s ‘Mount Trashmore’ problem, about 62 per
cent of people thought a new landfill should be created elsewhere, while about
37 per cent thought it should stay where it is.
In February 2011, 64 per cent of poll
respondents thought Grand Cayman’s solid waste disposal site should be located
somewhere other than George Town, with East End and Bodden Town being the most
Since that time, the government and the
Dart Group announced a deal that, among other things, would close and remediate
the George Town landfill and create a new facility in Bodden Town that could,
if the government decides to do it, accommodate the recycling, incineration and
safe disposal of solid waste.
In the meantime, Mount Trashmore continues
to get higher and more dangerous by the day. If it were economically feasible
to remediate the site and reduce its height through waste to energy or
recycling, we’re pretty sure one of the governments over the past two decades
would have done it.
There’s a solution in sight now and
although it won’t please everyone, it is in the best interests of the Cayman
Islands and the majority of its residents.
It’s time to put petty politics and self
interests aside and support the solution to a problem that the majority of
people in Cayman realise is vital to resolve.