Volcanic  material no good for Port use – Minister
May 5, 2023

Volcanic material no good for Port use – Minister

Deputy Prime Minister Montgomery Daniel has given further insight as to why materials spewed out during the 2021 volcanic eruption cannot be used for the land reclamation process as part of the Port Modernization Project in Kingstown.

The reclamation work began on Tuesday, April 25, with the dredging of material from the seabed on the south east coast of St Vincent. Some persons have expressed concerns that this can have long term negative environmental impacts on nearby communities. However, project officials have indicated otherwise based on scientific data.

For persons who are probably asking why dredging instead of using the abundance of volcanic material which is available, that material is simply not compatible for the work being done, Minister Daniel said on NBC radio on Wednesday, May 3.

The Transport and Works Minister emphasized that based on scientific studies which were done, “the volcanic material is absolutely no good for the work that is requested at the port.”

Daniel said that is why material from the seabed is being used.

“I would have been happy if that material could have been used,” the Member of Parliament for North Windward said.

He said when the designated red zone was cleaned after the April 2021 eruptions, there were tonnes of volcanic material which had to be cleared from the villages in the north and dumped elsewhere.

According to the minister, material was dumped at Richmond and Troumaca on the Leeward end, and at Rabacca and Sandy Bay on the windward side of the mainland.

“We have tonnes of material that are available, but it cannot be used because of its quality,” the Minister emphasised.

“One has to understand that where works are concerned that one would have to get the best material possible for doing the work.”

He pointed out that the use of substandard material for use in the port project would cause problems in the future.

Wednesday, April 3, marked one year since the start of the EC$458.4 million Port Modernization Project, and as at the end of April 2023, 20.3 percent of the physical work on the project is reported to have been completed.

Minister Daniel expressed confidence that the project is on course for completion in May, 2025.