BVI News

Erasing remnants of Irma | Prickly Pear to get cleaned

One of the BVI’s outer islands, the Prickly Pear. (Photo Credit: Bare Boats)

The Bitter End Yacht Club (BEYC) is aiming to erase all traces of the 2017 disaster in the territory as it moves to the Prickly Pear National Park on Friday for a land and sea cleanup.

Manager at BEYC’s Sunchaser Scuba, Ben Williams told BVI News the national park is one of a number of islands which still has glaring signs of the hurricanes that smashed into the territory more than eight months ago.

He said it is critical to get every aspect of the territory cleaned to its pre-hurricane state. The cleanup will also coincide with World Oceans Day – a day focused on raising the awareness of the importance of the oceans. World Oceans Day will be observed globally on June 8.

“The oceans are so important for us as a society and for the BVI since tourism makes up so much of our economy here. So, to keep the ocean clean is absolutely vital to our economic growth and to keep the planet clean as well,” he said.

Getting tourist-ready

According to Williams, the view of Prickly Pear island from Virgin Gorda is not pleasant; particularly on the southeastern side.

“There is a lot of debris from the other islands because the winds were so strong,” he said.

“We will be concentrating on the other side close to Saba Rock where all the debris came from because, when the tourist does start coming back, the last thing we want is for the tourist to see the remnants of Hurricane Irma. We want them to kind of forget that and move on from the hurricanes so we want to clean up all of that debris,” Williams said.

Additionally, Williams said the Prickly Pear is one of the favourite stops for the tourists.

“There are some moorings in front of Sand Box [Restaurant and beach bar], so we do see a lot of tourists using the beach for swimming”.

“They (tourists) use it as a nice overnight stop. They anchor their boats and do barbeques in the evening off their boat,” he said.

Williams said persons interested in joining in the cleanup campaign will be picked up from Gun Creek at 8:45am. Refreshments and a ‘rum punch’ will follow, he said.

The debris collected will be taken from the island and brought to the incinerator at Bitter End, Virgin Gorda.

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  1. Anonymous says:

    The islands to the East and South East side of Prickly Pear are some of the wealthiest in the world – individuals high on eco-sensitivity. It would be cool to know if they are helping clean up that island?

    • Total says:

      We are very interested at this moment in helping as we all should take care of the territory. However, we have bigger matters at hand on Friday in the March starting at 2:00pm. Please choose another day and we will assist.

      Thank you for your understanding

  2. wolves in sheep clothing says:

    lucille please be careful and keep a watchful eye

  3. vg resident says:

    Are you kidding? Tourists might find a downed tree unslightly. Get a grip on the real world. My villa is being rebuilt and there are remnants of IRMA I hope that they understand it a rebuild job and if they cannot figure that out the the villa vegetation is a bit down, let them look elsewhere. I am tired of this dribble.

    • Pear shaped says:

      Are YOU kidding? have you seen Prickly Pear? as the article states, the debris from other islands was blown and washed up on the shore. the volunteers are not going over to do some landscaping – the shores are full of trash. try thinking of the bigger picture and not just your own property.

  4. Lmb says:

    They ain’t clean their own property to now! Beyc is an eyesore. You laid off your staff when you could have repurposed them for the clean up. What happened to Sea and salsa event? But you want to jump into Prickly Pear now like you are Robin hood.

  5. VG says:

    Is National Parks involved in this

  6. Slick says:

    Nice work Ben and crew.Thank you for trying to clean up the trashy storm debris. The govt wont do anything about it. So glad the residents will.

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