Negril Chamber of Commerce Steadfast in Opposition to Breakwater, Despite Cabinet Approval

The Negril Chamber of Commerce says it remains resolute in its opposition to the Negril breakwater project.

Cabinet has approved the construction of the breakwater in Long Bay in the resort town.

The construction is being funded by the Adaptation Fund, through a grant of 10-million US or just over 1-billion Jamaican dollars..

Environment Minister, Robert Pickersgill, says the structures are aimed at protecting the beach from further erosion and prepare Negril for climate change adaptation.

But the Negril Chamber says the project will damage the environment and affect tourism in the resort town.

Environment and other stakeholders in Negril, led by the Chamber of Commerce, have all asked the Government to consider beach nourishment as an alternative to the breakwater project.

But the government is pressing ahead with its original plan, arguing that the breakwater is more sustainable and will return up to 48 meters of sand to the Negril shoreline.

The CEO of NEPA, Peter Knight says beach nourishment is not a feasible alternative.

Mr. Knight is also dismissing suggestions that the Government is more interested in securing the billion dollar grant for the project, rather than address the concerns raised.

The construction of the breakwater will begin as soon as a contractor has been procured.

That process is set to be complete in two months.