In 2015, I drew the attention of the Minister of Lands, Housing and the Environment to the problem of the disgusting and dangerous accumulation of plastic bottles at the shoreline of Runaway Ghaut (Frenchmen's Creek). He, in turn, requested the cooperation of the Environmental Health Department. Nothing resulted from our efforts.
In 2016, I repeated my request for action, resulting in the same negative.
Finally, in 2017, we have been granted an overdue, but immensely welcome cleanup of our ghaut led by wonderful Gaia Zuccherini, an Italian Master's student in International Relations and Development Cooperation, with focus on environment sustainability. Sad that it took someone from across the world to work on a problem that should have been dealt with locally.
Gaia has been organizing a series of workshops, the second of which was Zero Waste Management workshop with the aim of cleaning up Runaway Ghaut, which they worked on twice. The first day she had the help of mostly Montserratians who wanted to participate and on the second day some MSS girls assisted.
Following is Gaia's direct quote:
"Cleaning the ghaut we noticed that most of the trash comes from MSS; this plastic trash has been casually thrown away and has been carried offshore by the water until the ocean. Tons of plastics of ice lollies, chips and plastic bottles was the most common trash we found. Also polyurethane foam pieces, plastic forks, together with disposable lighters, tyres and even toothbrushes. We could collect more than twenty bags of trash, but we just walked from MSS to the ocean. More has to be cleaned upper MSS. During the ghaut cleaning, as part of my environmental activism (I am with Greenpeace since 2011), I could talk to the youths about the trash vortex and ocean and land pollution."
It would seem that the general public, and MSS students in particular, would benefit from some common-sense lectures regarding preservation of the environment, not to mention the crime of littering.