Simpson Bay Lagoon Kayak-tour highlights importance wetlands

POSTED: 02/6/13 12:16 PM
kayaking event 1Participants in the kayak fundraiser pose for a group picture

St. Maarten – Environmental Protection in the Caribbean (Epic) St. Maarten hosted its second annual fundraising kayak tour of the Simpson Bay Lagoon on Sunday with over 40 enthusiastic participants in attendance. The event was made possible through the generous sponsorship of Tri-Sport and was aimed at raising awareness about the importance of St. Maarten’s ponds and lagoons (wetlands).

On every February 2nd since 1997 countries around the World observe the adoption of the convention of wetlands in the city of Ramsar, Iran in 1971. Governments, NGOs and communities across the globe use this day to raise awareness and highlight the importance of the world’s wetlands. Sunday’s Kayaking event is the first of a number of activities EPIC will be undertaking this month to bring extra attention to the need to protect St. Maarten’s few remaining ponds. Activities will include school presentations, excursions, clean-ups and tree planting events.

Just four decades ago Dutch St. Maarten boasted at least 19 ponds, by the mid 1990s that number had been decreased to 10, today in 2013 less than 5 of St. Maarten’s Ponds remain intact. The Foundation therefore once again reiterates its calls for government to develop, implement and enforce environmental and conservation legislation aimed at protecting the island’s remaining wetlands and other ecologically, historically and culturally significant areas for current and future generations of residents and visitors to enjoy.

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