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No regard whatsoever for the environment
Over the years, some of the causes of the flooding experienced in T&T have been attributed to blocked drains, inadequate drainage, improper planning and unauthorised development. We have seen various governments embark on cleaning and widening of drains and creation of catchment pits. Still, improper planning and unauthorised development go on rampantly.
One only has to check in the various cities and borough councils, as well as the regional corporations, find out who is the city engineer and, most important, what are their qualifications and support staff. I bet you would find they are lacking in numbers and quality.
I visited a friend’s home in Goodwood Park about two years ago, with regards to cracks that developed in her walls. This person has a three-storey edifice with not guttering, almost bordering on the edge of the property, with an eight-inch drain at the sides and rear. I questioned the effectiveness of such drains where rain falls, and the response was, “It’s the neighbours’ problems.”
Where are our city engineers and building inspectors? How can an insurance company insure such a structure? Now, within the past two years, I’ve noticed a road cut from Cascade, going east through the hills into Santa Cruz. I do hope homes would not be built there, because the floods have since begun in Santa Cruz.
Only last month we visited Aripo and found another horror story is in the making. At the 1,300-foot elevation, someone has cleared the vegetation on his estate, and the rains have begun to degrade the topsoil. Who gave the approval? Who monitored the development of land above the 500-foot elevation level limit?
We have lapsed severely in implementing proper controls to preserve our environment. Could not the dysfunctional EMA, and APE, architectural and other engineering bodies get together to redefine limits and boundaries for in-progress and future development? Then, most importantly, could we not employ duly qualified individuals responsible for valuating, approving and inspecting all buildings and developments? Are we in T&T bent on being all money and no brains?
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