In light of the recent seaweed infestation, Minister of Agriculture, Food Production and Fisheries Moses Jn Baptiste said his ministry is not overly alarmed by the issue, despite the recent outcries of residents and fishermen.
Baptiste told St. Lucia News Online (SNO) today, August, 5: “We as representatives of the ministry and fisheries are not worried by the issue because we believe the solution to the problem is two-fold.”
The minister explained that one way of dealing with the infestation is to physically remove the material along areas where the problem seems to be extensive. The second alternative, he noted, is to take the decomposing seaweed and use it as organic manure for farming.
The challenge, he admitted, lies in the removal of as much seaweed as possible before the material can be used alternatively.
“The ministry understands that it is a nuisance to both residents and fishermen, at large,” Baptiste explained. However, he pointed out that the seaweed has many benefits, such a providing shelter for juvenile species at sea.
“We urge persons through various community programmes to physically remove as much as you can and make good use of it,” the minister advised.
Residents of Dennery, Micoud, Mon Repos and Praslin have all expressed concerns about the infestation of the seaweeds, stating that not only is it causing discomfort to fishermen, but it is also creating a bad stench in these communities.