Protesters want dump to stay put

Campaigners against a waste management facility in the Bodden Town area maintain it is the wrong option for the Cayman Islands. 

They believe the dump can be ‘affordably fixed’ where it is and have called for an open tendering process, following the new framework for fiscal responsibility regulations, to establish the best and most affordable option. 

Charles Clifford, a former environment minister and member of the Coalition to Keep Bodden Town Dump Free, outlined the group’s position in a press statement last month. 

He said the landfill problem could be fixed where it is, without contaminating a new site, and without carting Grand Cayman’s trash so far from its source. 

“The Environmental Advisory Board should be unshackled and mandated to freely look at the best waste management solution for Grand Cayman.  

“An open tendering process should follow so that the cost of that solution can be honestly determined, as per the provisions of FFR”. 

The group has long suggested that the proper procurement process was not followed by the previous government. 

In a Letter to the Editor of the Compass last month, Alain Beiner, chairman of the group’s co-ordinating committee, again made the case that solutions for the territory’s waste management issues should be put to an open bidding process. 

He said: “The FFR requires that all major public projects and all major divestitures of public assets be submitted to public tender. “This, according to Minister Mark Simmonds of the UK Foreign and Commonwealth Office, is required in order to ensure Cayman of ‘good governance of the public finances’, ‘best value for money’, ‘procurement undertaken in a transparent and competitive manner’, and to ensure that ‘due process has been followed’.  

“The Dart dump proposal has been cloaked in secrecy from the onset, and has never been submitted to such a process.” 

He said suggestions that it would cost $100 million to revamp the George Town site where “fictitious” and argued that many experts believed the problem could be resolved at its current site. He argued that the Midland Acres site had been selected to help Dart Realty get the dump out of its backyard to allow for the expansion of Camana Bay. 

The coalition has cited various reasons for not bringing the facility to the Midland Acres site describing it as a “lined pit” that will create a “Mount Trashmore East.” 

They have expressed concern over traffic and noise coming through the town, odour issues from the dump and environmental damage among a list of reasons the project should not go ahead at that location. 

Mr. Beiner said in a statement: “Reckless deals like the Dart dump plan and the long-standing failure to properly manage the George Town landfill – instead of ‘exporting’ it to Bodden Town – prove that past and present governments are responsible for our shameful environmental ranking.  

“Given the tiny size of our country and the extreme fragility of our environment, our next government should have as a priority that we set the environmental example for the world.” 

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