SMTA Supports Cleaner Lagoon

Submitted by administrator on Sun, 06/18/2017 - 20:51
St. Maarten News & Blog

The St. Maarten Timeshare Association (SMTA) established its Dollar-a-Day program in 2005, which gives guests the opportunity to voluntarily contribute one dollar per day on their room bill for community development projects. The program recently provided critical support to the local foundation Environmental Protection in the Caribbean (EPIC) St. Maarten, which needed emergency funds to upgrade the battery system on its sewage pumpout boat, Slurpy.
According to international law, boaters must be at least 12 nautical miles from land to legally discharge untreated sewage. Slurpy provides boaters in and around the Lagoon a much more convenient, hygienic, and environmentally responsible option. Waste stored in Slurpy’s sealed tank is securely disposed of in a larger land-based holding tank which is then pumped out by a septic truck and transported to the wastewater treatment facility

Natalia Collier, President of EPIC, noted “Slurpy was running on used batteries which had been donated and it wasn’t enough to keep the pump going; it was frustrating to get calls from boaters who want to do the right thing with their onboard waste, but then be unable to empty their tank before the batteries died or be unable to respond to requests because the batteries were being recharged. The Dollar-a-Day program has come to the rescue at a critical time and we are very grateful for their support as we work to create a cleaner Simpson Bay Lagoon.”
The sewage pump out the boat is part of EPIC’s Love the Lagoon Project, which works to protect and restore the Simpson Bay Lagoon, one of the largest inland lagoons in the West Indies, a crucial ecosystem, and center of the maritime industry.

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