Saturday, April 20, 2024

Clinketts hits rock bottom


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The Coastal Zone Management Unit is seeking a long-term, comprehensive solution to the erosion that is affecting the sea wall at Clinketts, St Lucy.  Already, the project has been included in a list currently under consideration for the Coastal Risk Assessment Management Programme, which is being jointly funded by the International Development Bank.  Coastal engineer Ricardo Arthur pointed out, however, that the list of projects must undergo a prioritisation process before a final selection is made, so the unit was not yet sure how soon work would commence at Clinketts.
A trip to St Lucy yesterday revealed an almost sandless beach, thousands of rocks littering the area, exposed tree roots, and a large exposed reef close to the shore.  Arthur explained to the WEEKEND NATION that the sea wall at Clinketts, St Lucy, had “repeatedly been undermined during high-energy wave events, removing the sand, leaving the foundations exposed to direct wave attack”.  This site, Arthur said, was particularly vulnerable to the swell waves, experienced between October and March each year, which came from due north, and caused erosion along the usually sheltered West Coast.
“The close proximity of the sea wall to the water line is also directly responsible for the seasonal loss of sand experienced, as the reflection of the waves from the vertical face of the wall increases the potential for erosion,”   he explained.  Member of Parliament for the area, Denis Kellman, lamented that the project had been on the cards for too long.  He said work at Clinketts had been budgeted for under the previous administration, but somewhere along the line things had changed and nothing had yet been done.  “The problem is that it’s a yearly thing. Coastal for years have been working on it. It has always been put in the budget, and then taken out, but I’ve given them a solution already,” he stated.
Kellman had on previous occasions suggested that Clinketts should have been the area for the next port, since  “it would kill two birds with one stone”.  One resident in the area, who wanted to remain anonymous, said he hoped something could be done about the erosion soon, since that part of the beach was inaccessible to sea bathers.  “It’s just a waste of beach, because there are so many rocks that it is even difficult to take a walk along that beach,” he noted.

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