The Directorate of Economy, Nature and Infrastructure (ENI) presented the draft Nature ordinance to the general public during a town hall meeting on Thursday, April 23, 2021 at the Mike van Putten Youth Centre.
Due to the fact that the current nature ordinances are outdated, a new ordinance will be adopted once it is ratified by the Island Council.
During the town hall meeting, attendees were informed on the differences between the old ordinances and the new nature ordinance. Anthony Reid, Director of ENI, delivered a presentation on the content of the ordinance. Monique James-Brown, Senior Policy and Legal Advisor, Dr. Erik Boman, Director of St. Eustatius National Park (STENAPA) and Susanne van den Groenendaal, Policy Advisor Nature of ENI, provided the technical support.
The new ordinance indicates that it is prohibited to leave waste in the public areas, the nature parks and in the water other than in a waste bin or in a place designated for waste disposal. It is illegal for anyone to damage, move, alter or remove underwater cultural heritage (corals). The goal is to better be able to protect Statia’s cultural heritage. With the ratification of the ordinance It will be prohibited to catch conch and lobsters without a license. In addition, there will be a permit system put in place to increase protection of the local fishery.
The executive council can set further rules with regards to the capture or collection of animals and plants in the marine nature park. Dogs, cats or cattle are not allowed to run loose inside a nature park.