#Providenciales, October 3, 2019 – Turks and Caicos – The dump contract with TCEM should never have been allowed to expire without a new company identified to take over management of the site which is laden with worrisome problems; it is the perspective of many residents suffering sickening smoke from the property adjacent their homes.
It is unclear which is fuming more; the residents of northwestern Providenciales, the dump itself or the illegal fires being lit near it.
Government, nearly one year after allowing the Turks and Caicos Environmental Management (TCEM) contract to expire, still has no company to take over proper management of the solid waste facility.
There has also been no plan shared either about the repeated problem of fires in the surrounding bushes of the Provo landfill.
Illegal people camp out in these bushes and they are reportedly setting up coal kilns.
The dump or landfill has been plagued lately with spot fires and residents are in fear for their health.
It has also been a year since the Caribbean Development Bank loan was approved at Cabinet. The CDB, is to facilitate consultative expertise when it comes to solid waste management nationwide in the Turks and Caicos.
There are garbage management issues on just about every ‘Beautiful by Nature’ Turks and Caicos Island.
Salt Cay, South Caicos, North Caicos, Grand Turk and Providenciales dumping grounds have all been a subject of news reports in recent years.
Magnetic Media research has found that Grenada is also on the receiving end of help from the Caribbean Development Bank when it comes to solid waste management. A consultation job was originally due to recommend a way forward for Grenada between March 2015 and September 2016.
It has taken four years for that project to get off the ground and three years later, in 2019 the job was re-ordered by the CDB with a new deadline for bids on the project advertised as this past May.
Years later and Grenada is no closer to a solution because there is simply too much waste coming in and nowhere to relocate the outgrown space, according to Myrna Julien, Senior Public Relations Officer with the Grenada Solid Waste Management Authority in speaking to Now Grenada news in September 2018.
Residents of the two Wheeland communities are now also questioning the location of the dump site in Providenciales. These residents are convinced it was the dump which, last night polluted the air and filtered into homes where windows were opened or air-conditioning was used.
The PDM Administration had promised a comment on the weekend; that comment came today and informed that there was a tour of the property on October 1, by acting Health Minister and Premier, Sharlene Robinson and Delroy Williams, MP or Wheeland.
The comment, issued this morning also invited residents to a community meeting on Thursday October 3, 2019 at 6:30pm at Kingdom Dominion International Church in Millennium Heights commercial complex.
Premier Sharlene Robinson in her Mid-Term Address in January 2019 said that: “…As we are now embarking on a joint CDB/TCIG funded consultancy on Solid Waste, we await the findings before determining the Body to govern waste management.”
That was nine months ago and residents have boldly expressed in various WhatsApp chat groups and to their House of Assembly representative, Delroy Williams, that they are fed up and ready to see a change in the conditions at and around the Providenciales Landfill.
Header: Photo by Belglade Parker Gardens resident, taken September 25, 2019.
Insert: Billowing black smoke from Saturday’s fire. (Magnetic Mdia photo)