A new multi-million dollar recycling project at Lower Estate, St Michael faces possible shut down for lack of authorization, only days after it started receiving solid waste.
Chief Town Planner Mark Cummins has told Barbados TODAY his department had not given permission for any such development in that area.
“I can confirm that no planning permission has been given for that operation at Lower Estate. It [the project] was also drawn to the attention of my officers and we are working on it [the report],” Cummins said when contacted this afternoon.
When a team from Barbados TODAY visited the site at Lears Quarry on Monday where the waste is being disposed, the man behind the project, Anderson “Fat Child” Cherry of Jose Y Jose Liquid and Solid Waste Management Incorporated, revealed that the garbage which could be seen had been collected by his company from around the island.
Cherry said the quarry, which had been the site of illegal dumping, would be cleaned up and the waste which he had already begun to dump there would be separated and treated and some of the processed waste would be exported.
Cherry also denied he was dumping illegally. “I acquired this quarry where people were dumping illegally, to clean it up and separate the garbage,” he said, pointing to a clump of tree branches in one area and construction material in another. “We are not dumping illegally. We are disposing of garbage in a proper way,” he added.
He also said a proposal had been sent to Government outlining what the project would entail.
“We want the Government to partner with us,” Cherry said, giving a glimpse into the proposed document.
A Barbados TODAY team returned to the site this afternoon and unlike Monday, there were nearly half dozen excavators in operation clearing the quarry and separating the garbage, much more of which was evident on this occasion. Used tyres, pieces of steel and wood could be seen in the quarry.
“My aim right now is to take all this stuff that’s down here and separate it out; take the good stuff that we need to recycle and separate it from the bad stuff and just recycle everything that we can then turn it into wood chips or whatever we need to turn it into,” Roger Fields, the supervisor at the site, told Barbados TODAY.
“We have just been clearing the area to make our bins so that we have areas to stockpile the stuff as we clean it out of the area at the moment. We have bins for steel, paper, green waste, tyres, glass, plastic. We have bins for all that so we just put in everything as we go along,” he added, confirming that the project was indeed underway.
On both visits to the quarry, the Barbados TODAY team met trucks with skips leaving the site, one of which bore the markings Jose Y Jose.
When contacted this afternoon as a follow up to Monday’s site visit, Cherry said his media relations official, Deanza Roberts, would contact Barbados TODAY shortly thereafter.
He declined further comment and up to the time of publication there has been no word from Roberts.
Cherry announced on September 2 that he would establish a more than $60 million recycling project which he anticipated
would lead to zero waste going to the landfill by 2020.
The Chief Executive Officer of Project Recycle Limited revealed at the time that more than $2 million had been spent to purchase five vehicles and equipment for Phase I of the three-part project, with the second phase expected to cost $9 million and $50 million for the third phase.
He said then the first two phases would create employment for about 75 people and a total of 115 jobs would be employed when the company became fully operational.