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February 26, 2008

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robert Tarzwell

we are from Canada where everything is recyled , it is heart tearing to watch the people in the bahamas just throw things where they last used them , lead acid batteries, pop cans , chicken take out bags and styrofoam, we try to compost what we can, we buy fuits and vegies from a local vendor with no plastic bags or packaging , we buy fruit powder to add to water for drinking instead of pop and the cans, but thats it , we want to recyle however we have no way to accomplish the goal with out the goverment starting a proper recycle program.

Marie Ramsay

I am happy to see this website and your article. My daughter was involved in banning plastic bags in a small town in New Zealand the first in the world.

Perhaps as you said education in the school can be the first step to attempt to decrease the use of plastic and cans. www.plasticshoppingbagfree.org.nz

Olga Munroe

I am originally from NYC. I have been in the Bahamas for 16 years and I love this country. Some of my friends and I want so desperately to do something but we feel overwhelmed. The environmental deterioration is evident. We are living first world but thinking third world. I have been trying to do my part by using the green bags for groceries, not using paper goods and making my own cleaning product amongst other things but I want to do more. Please tell me how else I can help.
I think educating the public is key. We have so many talk shows maybe this can be a way to get the recycling voice heard. Would the schools allow you to teach on the subject? Is there a way to get environmental classes taught at C.O.B.? This country is so beautiful we can’t just sit Idly by and watch it deteriorate to the point of no return.

OM

Andy O'Brien

The three biggest issue facing us in the Family islands are:

1. Government charging duty on energy saving items like solar panels and black plastic tanks to make solar heated hot water for our homes or whatever to save electricity- sun and wind are free in the Bahamas- oil generated electric is expensive in dollars and ecology

2. Reverse the meter! If we invest in solar or wind generation equipment, we should be able to run our electric meters in reverse when we generate excess electricity

3. Clean up laws- we need laws to allow Local Government to order a landowner/user to clean up their act- get rid of trash, old batteries and so on.

larry smith

Just for the sake of clarity - solar panels and associated equipment (like inverters) are currently duty-free, although there is a uqestion about stamp tax.

Net metering requires legislative changes and is supposed to be under consideration.

Chloe Poulson

I am so relieved to have found this article! I am originally from San Diego, but my family and I moved to The Bahamas about three years ago. I have always been very confused about the recycling process in The Bahamas, I still don't know if they even have one. I have been researching for more and more information about recycling in The Bahamas, what is being done to help, what is working and raising awareness, but I haven't found much information. I'm 15 and attend Lyford Cay International School, my grade does personal project every year, and I have decided to focus my project on this area- recycling in The Bahamas. My main goal is to help spread awareness in The Bahamas about recycling... What people can do to help and so forth. I agree that educating the citizens is the first step, but I'm not sure how I am going to do that yet. I am also apart of my school's Interact club and we're distributing green bags to help with the plastic grocery bag problem, but I know this is not enough. I need more information and more ideas. How else can I help?

Chloe Poulson

I am so relieved to have found this article! I am originally from San Diego, but my family and I moved to The Bahamas about three years ago. I have always been very confused about the recycling process in The Bahamas, I still don't know if they even have one. I have been researching for more and more information about recycling in The Bahamas, what is being done to help, what is working and raising awareness, but I haven't found much information. I'm 15 and attend Lyford Cay International School, my grade does personal project every year, and I have decided to focus my project on this area- recycling in The Bahamas. My main goal is to help spread awareness in The Bahamas about recycling... What people can do to help and so forth. I agree that educating the citizens is the first step, but I'm not sure how I am going to do that yet. I am also apart of my school's Interact club and we're distributing green bags to help with the plastic grocery bag problem, but I know this is not enough. I need more information and more ideas. How else can I help?

Ginny Mckinney

Hi Chloe

I am amazed how often on this tiny island of New Providence we are able to keep so many secrets.

Right in your school parking lot the one beyond the swimming pool is our Cans For Kids aluminium can collection bin, it's blue about 7'long, 4' wide and 5'high. It says Cans for Kids right on it.

There was a teacher in the lower grades who was working on getting the school active in collecting their aluminium cans as well as the whole community of Lyford Cay. But obviously it is'nt working so well.

We would love it if some of the students would develop/grow the programme at your school and in the surrounding communities of Lyford Cay and Mount Pleasant.

There was another Teacher who I believe was teaching at you Grade Level who contacted us. I will find her name and get it to you or give her your name.

For other recycling there is Action Recycling taking back beer and Vita Malt bottles for Commonwealth Brewery and Sands Beer of Freeport also collects their own bottles and re-uses them.

Scrap metal has a few dealers operating one down by the landfill on Harold Road and one on Carmichael Road. The cars are also collected and taken to Marshall Road for crushing and then shipped out.

There is also a commercial composting company out at the Airport Industrial Park called Green Systems, they accept garden waste from Lyford Cay and the surrounding communities. They also sell mulch they make from discarded shipping pallets.

My company Wastenot Limited has been trying to get the Government to stop allowing everybodies garden waste to go to the landfill for over 10 years now. We eventually get them to stop. In the meantime that is often the source of the landfill fires and of course a huge amount of methane.

We are about to start recycling the tires at the landfill and BEC has called for and now received a bunch of proposals for Renewable Energy Systems. That is solar, wind, wave and WTE.

We will try and get some more info out to your schools this week because there are also some companies refilling ink cartridges. Thanks again for asking about whats going on with recycling. You have obviously figured out there is no Planet B and want to look after the one we've got, wish more people were like you.

Sincerely Ginny McKInney

Chloe Poulson

I am very pleased to have received such an informative reply so quickly. Thank you, I really appreciate it. All of the information you have provided me with has turned out to be very useful. I can't believe I've been living here for three years and didn't know about Cans For Kids, this means that many others in my school probably don't know much about it either. My advisor and I have been coming up with ways to fix this problem and spread the knowledge. It would be very helpful to find out the name of the teacher you mentioned though, we'd probably both be happy to be helping out.

Rochelle Scott

Hi I am an architect in the Bahamas presently in Canada on training. I have been here for about almost six months and I am very impressed with Vancouver's recycling and overall greening program. Vancouver was actually just recognized as the second greenest city in the world. That's a huge accomplishment. One day I would like to see the Bahamas become the greenest country in the Caribbean region. To do this does take education, starting with our pre-schoolers. These precious babes have the ability to get their parents attention easily, and it is proven that whatever they are taught at this stage stays with them forever. I have a child in the Catholic school system and right now I am in the process of putting together a proposal to ban all styro-foam containers from their schools, replacing them with lunch containers which can be recycled or at the very least are bio-degradeable. I also want to try and introduce into the school systems energy saving initiatives such as timers for lights, refilling ink cartridges instead of buying new ones, installing energy saving faucets and flush valves in the rest rooms.
Some of these initiatives do bear a high initial cost, but in the long run, the benefit to the school and the environment will be priceless.
The establishing of a recyling center in each classroom will also encourage overall student participation. My goal is to also have a compost center on each campus with the compost being used to fertilize plants and vegetables that the students, teachers and parents can all use. They can sell surplus or give away to the neighboring community.
If anyone has any ideas or suggestions to help make this dream a reality please contact me at:rosie_alexandria@yahoo.com

We only have one planet, one country, one life, let's do something with it that benefits us all.

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