Opening the Canal

Since we arrived in November, the bridge in Grand Case has spanned a stretch of sand rather than a canal to the salt pond that surrounds the airport. As we prepare for the coming hurricane season, however, that is changing. A couple days ago a digger began excavating the sand to create a canal leading out to the bay in preparation for potential rains that may fill the salt pond and require an outlet.

Although it is probably necessary, it is also disturbing because it will inevitably release the very dirty pond water into the bay, polluting the water and the beach. Without knowing for sure, I would guess that the pond is not only a dumping ground for visible trash, but also contains sewage from nearby homes and businesses. Although there are mangroves surrounding the pond and plants and animals absorbing and filtering some of the pollution, it’s clearly not nearly enough to handle the amount of waste that accumulates there. It will be interesting to see the impact on the bay and the pond when the canal is fully open.

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