The Sint Maarten Nature Foundation has expressed its grave concerns regarding the unrestricted flow of waste water being entered into an area of Kim Sha Beach. During inspections carried out at various times at the area waste and possibly sewage water was clearly seen being pumped from the wall of the Atrium Hotel parking area directly unto a section of Kim Sha Beach, close to the ruins of the Old Simpson Bay Bridge, which is listed as a historical monument. Building construction material was also found to be illegally dumped at the site.

“We responded to several complaints that raw sewage was being pumped into the area behind Atrium Hotel and we made an inspection of the location in question. Unfortunately, upon arriving at the location, we could see waste water and possibly sewage being pumped through the wall belonging to Atrium Hotel unto Kim Sha Beach. There is also a large amount of construction rubble and material dumped at the site. Aside from the environmental effects all this wastewater and dumped material and garbage is right by the old Simpson Bay Bridge, which is listed as a historical monument.

“What is also unfortunate is that while we are recovering from Hurricane Irma and trying to market Kim Sha Beach as a location for Cruise Ship Passengers as an area to enjoy in order to make our economy strong again these types of environmental damages hurt the island financially. No tourist or resident, if they are aware of the true state of Kim Sha Beach, would want to visit there. Additionally, the area is also a health hazard with stagnant waste water and garbage posing a threat to the health of the population in terms of exposure to the Zika Virus and other health issues,” commented Tadzio Bervoets, Nature Foundation Manager.

The Nature Foundation has tried contacting the Atrium Hotel but has received no response. A correspondence was also sent to the inspection department at VROMI informing them of the situation. A video of the wastewater and garbage at the location has been uploaded to the Nature Foundation Facebook Page.