St. Maarten – The Environmental Protection in the Caribbean (Epic) foundation has received critical financial support from the Simpson Bay Lagoon Authority Corporation to support the operation of its sewage pumpout boat, affectionately named Slurpy, which services Simpson Bay Lagoon and surrounding waters.
The vessel was badly damaged during Hurricane Gonzalo last year, which struck with relatively little warning. With support from the Simpson Bay Lagoon Authority, part of the Port St. Maarten Group of Companies, Slurpy will have a brand new engine that will ensure reliable service. In addition, funds will be used to renew insurance and for marketing to build the customer base.
Epic’s Love the Lagoon Program is working to protect and restore the Simpson Bay Lagoon, one of the largest inland lagoons in the West Indies, a crucial ecosystem, and center of the maritime industry. In addition to reducing pollution, pumpout boat service is essential for a world-class yachting destination such as St. Maarten.
The Simpson Bay Lagoon Authority is responsible for management of the Simpson Bay Lagoon, including operating and maintenance of the Bridge and Causeway. By partnering with Foundations such as Epic, the Lagoon Authority hopes to tackle the environmental management of the lagoon and reduce pollution which is part of its strategic plan.
With high season approaching, many boats will be in need of a way to dispose of their wastewater in a hygienic and environmentally-friendly manner. To fill this need, Epic purchased a sewage pumpout boat several years ago with wide support from the community. Other major contributors include CA Technologies, Island Global Yachting, Princess Port de Plaisance, Wired Sailor, and St. Maarten Shipyard. Now, with the support of the Simpson Bay Lagoon Authority, Epic will be able to complete repairs and once again launch this service.
There is an unfulfilled demand for a proper wastewater disposal method for the estimated 1,000 vessels found in the island’s waters during high season. According to international law, boaters must be at least 12 nautical miles from land to legally discharge untreated sewage. Slurpy provides boaters in and around the lagoon a much more convenient, hygienic, and environmentally responsible option.
The Simpson Bay Lagoon Authority also strives to enhance and improve the environment of Simpson Bay and the lagoon and was more than willing to support Epic’s initiative.
The Lagoon Authority takes a lead in encouraging visitors and vessels to comply with local rules and regulations and to keep the lagoon and its facilities safe and free of pollution. Its aim is to ensure that St. Maarten is one of the best, pleasantest and most enjoyable yachting destinations in the eastern Caribbean.
The Simpson Bay Lagoon Authority is also a driving force in the development of economically and environmentally sustainable and durable yachting tourism in St. Maarten.
To learn more about being a pumpout boat sponsor, contact Natalia Collier at 545 30 09 or wrote to [email protected].
Source: Today SXM Slurpy gets critical support from Simpson Bay Lagoon Authority