With about $5 million in investment sitting idle for the past eight years while the country is losing out on critical foreign exchange, one local businessman is calling on Government to come to his rescue.
Managing Director of B’s Recycling Paul Bynoe said despite several promises from the past Democratic Labour Party (DLP) administration, he was still waiting to put his metal shredding machine to use after purchasing it in 2011 in preparation for a promised green energy project in St Thomas.
“We would love to do more. We have a piece of equipment that will shred a fridge, stove, washing machine or an old car, separating the dirt, the glass, tires and foam. We have it on island now for the last eight years hoping that we can get it set up, but we have our ups and downs in trying to get it move to a proper location. I am hoping that under this administration that can happen,” said Bynoe.
“I know that the last government designated Vaucluse as the green energy area, but we are hoping to get there and real fast. This can shred all the fridges, stoves, washing machines and all the unwanted vehicles, and can clean up the material as it comes out and we could ship it off the island,” he said.
Speaking to reporters at his Cane Garden, St Thomas facility on Friday, Bynoe said it “pains” him every time he had to visit the area and see the equipment lying idle.
He explained that under a “green energy programme” that was touted by the DLP back in 2013, he would have been given a space at the Vaucluse, St Thomas location.
Then Minister of the Environment and Drainage Dr Denis Lowe had promised a $1 billion green energy programme for Vaucluse, where a Mangrove Pond Green Energy Complex would be built and more than 800 jobs created during the life of the project, of which 76 would be permanent.
The plan also consisted of a waste-energy facility, a solar farm and a wind farm facility, which would collectively save the country thousands of barrels of oil each year, while reducing the island’s carbon footprint.
“We intend to continue pushing our green energy programme. The pathway we set now, can save generations to come,” Lowe said at the time while speaking on a state television programme.
However, with nothing in sight and the equipment purchased as part of the plan to have a facility located there, Bynoe said the country continued to lose out on job creation and earning foreign exchange.
“We did whatever we had to do in order to try to get there but we are awaiting some final things,” said Bynoe, who reported that while he was devastated and his “spirits crushed” following a 2013 fire at his facility, he was on the mend.
There are currently three huge pieces of equipment sitting on a section of his Cane Garden facility along with five container loads of fixtures, that when put together would create the metal shredder machine, the first of its kind in the region.
Bynoe said he has already sent a letter to the current administration requesting a meeting. He added that he was eager to help create jobs, bring in more foreign exchange and keep the island clean.