Member of Parliament for St Michael West Central James Paul wants to see the return of an environmental tax.
Speaking in Parliament today during debate on the Sanitation Service Authority Bill, Paul said that some businesses that contributed to the waste disposal problem currently plaguing Barbados did not help fund waste disposal.
And he argued that an environmental levy would change the equation.
“Not too long ago we had the environmental tax, which we had to rectify in order to ensure that we comply with WTO [World Trade Organization] regulations.
“But in a sense, the reason why we should have environmental tax is because the very businesses that bring in these products, whether or not they be bottles, whether or not they be plastics, whatever it is, assume no responsibility in getting rid of the menace to the environment,” Paul explained.
“They expect that at the same time they should bring in their products, but when it comes to the question of the disposal of these products nobody is paying any attention to them.”
The Chief Executive Officer of the Barbados Agricultural Society said while people looked to the state-run Sanitation Service Authority (SSA) to manage the country’s waste disposal problems, everyone had a role to play.
“The SSA provides a service and the service it provides is demanded by individuals. Really, in truth and in fact, it is the individual who is the determining factor in terms of determining the effectiveness of the service which the SSA provides,” Paul insisted.
“We need a level of cooperation from individuals in the society, that will help to at least pave the way for the SSA to be more effective in the strategies that it will develop, to solve the problems that we have in our society as it relates to sanitation and the impact that it has on the health of Barbadians.
“But the issue across the divide which we have to face, is really what type of policies do we need to encourage our people to avoid the future when our plastics in the environment can basically make Barbados an unsafe place to live, because we seem to think that the environment in which we are in can continue to take the garbage…” he added.