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Corporation wants help to remove sargassum

Sunday, April 22, 2018
Volunteers and employees of Sangre Grande Regional Corporation remove sargassum seaweed from Rincon Bay, Matura, on Friday. PICTURE RALPH BANWARIE

Employees of the Sangre Grande Regional Corporation (SGRC) including chief executive officer Dianne Lakhan and chairman Terry Rondon along with members of the Sangre Grande Volunteer Network journeyed to Rincon Bay, Matura, on Friday to remove sargassum seaweed from the beach.

The sargassum which is increasing in volume, as much as ten inches high, has been affecting the turtles visiting the shore to lay their eggs.

When volunteers and employees of the SGRC arrived on the beach and saw the large volume of seaweed they decided to use a backhoe to remove it, but they were forced to change their plan as turtles had already laid eggs on the beach and they did not want to disturb the hatching process. They armed themselves instead with rakes, hay forks, and garbage bags and started the clean-up operation. The sargassum was removed from the shore, filled into garbage bags, and packed onto a truck to be transported to a farm in the area. Rondon said it was a difficult task. As fast as you remove the seaweed more washes ashore.

With the permission and support of the CEO and county superintendent, they will continue this process every day to ensure the safety of the turtles nesting.

“We are going to assist this community, Nature Seekers and others who seek the protection of the turtles. We will assist in removing the sargassum from this shore, we don’t know how far we will reach, but we are going to assist,” said Rondon.

“I am proud of the workers of the Sangre Grande Regional Corporation as everyone including the CEO and administration staff came out to assist. We are doing it with joy from our heart.”

Lakhan said “I will be happy to see more volunteers joining and assisting in clearing the seaweed at Rincon Bay. It is about one mile of shore to remove the seaweed and we are appealing to the public to assist in removing the seaweed so that the turtles can have a successful nesting period.”

April 22 is World Environment Day and the Corporation has embarked on this clean-up project with the theme “End Plastic Pollution.”

Lakhan is also appealing to the public to take away their garbage after using the beaches.

—reporting by RALPH BANWARIE


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