~ The project will take 18 months to construct— Agreement with Synergy annulled ~
PHILIPSBURG:— The Minister of VROMI has made some headway in getting a waste to energy plant on St. Maarten which would probably eliminate the fires at the dumpsite and also decrease the size of the ‘hill’ on Pond Island.
The Minister announced on Wednesday that he signed an MOU (memorandum of understanding) with a company to deal with the garbage situation on St. Maarten. In a separate interview with SMN News Minister Emmanuel said that some 17/18 companies submitted proposals to the Department of VROMI but only four of them really mentioned the landfill (dump) in their proposals in terms of remediating and taking care of the landfill.
The Minister said the landfill was his main concern, therefore, the other companies were eliminated. Of the four that remained, he said at least three of them wanted government to make a financial contribution which he also did not agree with since the company that is awarded the project will make their monies back to the sale of energy to GEBE, and by selling recycled materials overseas. The Minister said he agreed to give the company a power purchase agreement for the energy they generate. Minister Emmanuel said while negotiating the agreement Enviro-green is the only company that gave government a favorable cost at which they will sell the energy they produce.
Besides that, he said Enviro-green have waste to energy plants that are active, one he said is in Canada and the other in the Philippines. These two companies handle similar types of garbage that is generated in tropical countries. The Minister said these factors are very important to him thus he chose to sign an MOU with Enviro-green. Emmanuel said it’s been three months now he has been in negotiation with the Canadian company but kept things quiet until an agreement was reached. At the moment Enviro-green is busy reviewing the concession while evaluating the landfill as it is right now.
The Minister of VROMI said the current Prime Minister William Marlin had an agreement with Synergy but that agreement was annulled at no cost to government. He made clear that he did not re-invent the wheels on this project since he used the same attorney that Synergy used and that attorney managed to annul the agreement and worked on the MOU for Envirogreen and the Government of St. Maarten. He reminded with Synergy also would not have cost government any monies. Emmanuel said that government used the same lawyers to execute the project which would not cost government nor GEBE any money.
Asked how soon Enviro-green would start the project, the Minister said that Envirogreen is currently reviewing the concession and the power purchase agreement. Asked how long it would take Enviro-green to construct the waste to energy plant in St. Maarten and the location where the plant will be constructed. The Minister said Envirogreen promised to have the plant constructed and operational within 18 months and that plant will be constructed on Pond Island where government had reserved 12,000 square meters of land for the construction of a waste to energy plant.
Minister Emmanuel made clear that this company will have to do everything according to the laws of St. Maarten, he said they will have to establish a company on St. Maarten and pay their dues like every other company while they would also have to employ people on St. Maarten. He said that while Enviro-green promised to bring the hill to some 16 meters while government gave room to up to 21 meters. The Minister said that while managing the landfill Enviro-green will be removing copper and all other materials that have value from the landfill which they will sell overseas.
Source: St. Martin News Network
Minister of VROMI signs MOU with Enviro–green to construct waste to energy plant on St. Maarten.