Prime Minister David Thompson receives assistance from pupils of St. John’s Primary School during the tree planting at Kendal Plantation.
“You can physically see the devastation that has taken place as part of the economic choices that we make [in] our own lifestyle choices, as well as to accommodate others who visit us and enjoy what we have.”
This observation was made by Prime Minister David Thompson today, World Earth Day, as he delivered remarks at the launch of The Youth Development Services’ (YDS), Tree Planting Project, at Kendal Plantation in St. John.
Stressing that Barbados drew its water supply from underground, Mr. Thompson lamented the fact that even though people were warned on a daily basis that illegal dumping negatively affected the supply, they still engaged in this activity.
“We have to make choices, while accommodating differences. There will come a time when government is going to have to say, that illegal dumping cannot be sustained in Barbados. So, our lifestyle choices are going to become more and more limited, if we don’t take action now to protect future generations.
“It is important for young people themselves to ask, advocate, pressure and cajole others into supporting the kinds of lifestyle changes that will sustain life in this country,” the Prime Minister stressed.
In her remarks, Director of YDS, Latoya Burnham, explained that their project focused on environmental change in a way that brought the issues concerning environmental degradation and the release of carbon emissions into the atmosphere, more closely to the forefront of local discussion.
"It aims to connect the public, our students, from the primary level and upwards, and our government leaders towards creating sustainable change,” she said.
Ms. Burnham acknowledged that more housing was necessary, that the roadways and highways needed improving and that the local beaches needed development.
She urged, however, that when such developments were taking place, that the sustainability of the environment be taken into consideration.
The YDS’ tree planting project will form part of an environmental and heritage tourism package. It is being financed by the Global Environment Funds, Small Grants Programme of the United Nations Development Programme and several other partners.