Advocacy director of the Future Centre Trust (FCT) Kammie Holder has criticized petroleum products distributor, SOL, for cutting down two trees at its Collymore Rock, St Michael service station, which were apparently blocking signs.
In response, SOL sales executive of retail Denise Mendes apologized on behalf of the company, told Barbados TODAY it was an unfortunate event, and pledged it would not happen again.
Saying it was time Barbados was developed in “the most sustainable way”, Holder called on the relevant authorities to review the Trees (Preservation) Act in order to make persons who randomly cut down trees more accountable.
“Unfortunately, many are not aware of the benefits of trees as two more have been brutally butchered. Too often trees are randomly killed in the name of progress,” Holder said. “The recent act is indicative of man’s contempt of his fragile environment.”
Highlighting the importance of trees to the environment, the Future Centre Trust official said they were more than wood and leaves. “They act as air filters, prevent flooding, facilitate pollination, enhance social cohesion among residents and provide a home for termites,” he explained. “If ever there was a crime [for cutting down trees], many companies and individuals in Barbados would be found guilty.”
Calling for greater respect to be shown to trees and plants, Holder suggested that SOL should donate 12 fruit trees “to the people of Barbados” after destroying the two palms. He said those responsible for “The Future Centre Trust initiative Trees For The Future would gladly assist in the planting of these trees”.
Apologizing over the “unfortunate incident”, Mendes emphasized that SOL was committed to the greening
of the island.
“What really should have happened was that those palms should have been relocated. What we try to do, as a service station, is to have foliage and greenery but nothing that is going to be detracting or making the place less safe,” she explained.
“Those palms really became too big. It really wasn’t about the sign. It was that they were becoming too big and needed cutting back. They should have been relocated someplace else and something a little shorter would suffice. …That was an unfortunate incident and one that will not be repeated.”