By Admin. Updated 2:33 p.m., Updated 2:33 p.m., Thursday, December 16, 2021, Atlantic Standard Time (GMT-4).
Minister of Finance Camillo Gonsalves announced in parliament on Monday, an initiative for the establishment of a Coastal and River Protection Unit under Economic Planning.
He said it is well known that for years our development went on in a largely unstructured way and as a result settlements have developed along river banks and flood plains. Gonsalves said that in recent times with the impact of climate change and in the aftermath of the volcanic eruption, the threat of lahars via the flow of rivers through these developments have significantly heightened the potential for damage and personal injuries.
The Finance Minister added that the government has been responding to these events after they have occurred but a better approach would be to try to mitigate the impact of these events. The Finance Minister noted that this unit will seek to provide a proactive mitigation approach as its main focus would be on the monitoring of developments prone to damages associated with coastal erosive elements.
Gonsalves said it is envisaged that mitigation works will be done by the unit and that relatively small interventions can be undertaken before major works become necessary.
The establishment of a Coastal Protection Unit is one of two initiatives announced by the finance minister while presenting the Estimates of Revenue and Expenditure for the 2022 fiscal year.
The other initiative is the subsuming of the Banana Service Unit in the Ministry of Agriculture.