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Resort ‘concerned’ about environmental impact on Bimini

  • Bimini residents attempt to clean up a major Styrofoam spill in waters near Alice Town yesterday. The spill resulted from damage to a floating dock during the passage of Hurricane Irma.

  • Sidney Levarity, a local caretaker for a community workshop in Bailey Town, Bimini, sits inside a damaged building yesterday after Hurricane Irma completely decimated the facility.

  • Prime Minister Dr. Hubert Minnis greets ‘Save Our Home Bimini’ protester Jenny Cook as he arrived on Bimini yesterday to view the damage left behind by Hurricane Irma.

  • A major Styrofoam spill in waters near Alice Town, Bimini yesterday. The spill resulted from damage to a floating dock during the passage of Hurricane Irma.

Guardian Senior Reporter

Published: Sep 15, 2017

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Resorts World Bimini President Patricia “Missy” Lawrence said yesterday that she is “deeply concerned” about the environmental effects that Hurricane Irma has had on Bimini.

Resorts World’s marina was badly damaged during the storm, causing many of its floating docks to either wash up on shore, or break up and expose debris to nearby beaches and marinas.

Some residents have complained about the unsightliness and the environmental effects this has caused and are urging that the government take action.

But Lawrence said a team of people is cleaning up the area.

“Environmentally, of course, we are deeply concerned, just like everybody else is deeply concerned,” Lawrence said.

“If you go out there today you will see my minimal team that I have here today is trying to do everything they can do to help with remediation.

“RAV [Bahamas’] team has been instrumental in putting some boom curtains out there to stop the flow out [of debris] and we are 100 percent concerned.”

Prime Minister Dr. Hubert Minnis, as well as officials from the National Emergency Management Agency and members of the opposition visited Bimini and Resorts World yesterday to view firsthand the damage caused by Hurricane Irma and a tornado that hit the island.

A small group of protestors from the Save Our Home Bimini organization greeted Minnis and his delegation when they arrived.

Some held flags and placards saying “Save our home” and “No further developments”.

Jenny Cook, the protest organizer, said she wanted the prime minister to be cognizant of their concerns.

“We’ve been protesting the further development by the resort here,” she said.

“Dr. Minnis is definitely giving us hope that it really is the people’s time and we have faith that some steps are being taken now to right things here on the island, to put things right for the future.”

Minnis later met with Lawrence and RAV Bahamas President Rafael Reyes at Resorts World.

Reyes assured the prime minister that a team of engineers will be assessing coastal erosion and other environmental issues near the resort.

“We are going to analyze everything to ensure that the integrity is still solid,” he said.

“We are going to come up with a formula to rejuvenate the beach and as quickly as possibly.”

Reyes asked the prime minister for assistance with expediting “permits” to get certain works started.

Minnis replied, “We will facilitate everything within the law. I am an environmental protector.”

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