The First Trash for Tours event hosted by Pelican Peak and the Nature Foundation St. Maarten, whereby participants could do the Pelican Peak experience free of charge by collecting trash, turned out to be a great success! On Sunday the 24th of November, at least 30 volunteers gathered at Dock Maarten, next door to the cruise port to do a local area clean-up, two bags of trash collected earned a free ride on the zipline and access to 3 viewing decks located on the Pelican Peak hillside.
“Protecting our island and putting environmental initiatives in place isn’t at the expense of local business and our community- but rather a necessary precaution. Tourism sustains over 90% of the local economy and without the natural beauty of our environment it’s very likely that many of these tourists will not return. At Pelican Peak, we know we have to do our part, last October we launched the first leg of the Plant a Million Corals initiative, with local coral regeneration sites also in partnership with the Nature Foundation, Dr. David Vaughan and with the global oceans charity, Sea Legacy. With Trash For Tours we hope to inspire the local community of St. Maarten to join in on environmental initiatives, build awareness about the importance of protecting our island while also having some fun,” says Jesse James, the Operations Manager at Pelican Peak.
Under the guidance of the Nature Foundation the 30 plus volunteers brought in over 70 bags of trash off the local beaches and roadways in Philipsburg. The Foundation uses reusable garbage bags and gloves for their clean up activities, as plastic bags add an additional strain on our environment due to its harmful impact on nature and as plastic does not biodegrade.
“We had a great team of young volunteers to cleanup the area around Dock Maarten, all volunteers were very eager to collect trash and most of them collected much more than the two bags needed to ride the zip line. The reward for collection trash was ecstatic with beautiful views over St. Maarten and an amazing fast ride down the hill. I think the initiative of Trash for Tours is great as it educates and actively involves the youth with the significance of a clean environment and it rewards them for their environmental conscience effort, hopefully inspiring them to continue to keep our island clean and green” stated Nature Foundation’s Manager Melanie Meijer zu Schlochtern.
Pelican Peak plans to continue with the rollout of Trash For Tours, if you have a group or organization that would be interested in participating in our next clean-up please send an email with your information to email@example.com.
The Nature Foundation is a non-profit organization located on St. Maarten and aims to preserve and enhance its nature for generations to come. Pelican Peak is a zipline attraction located in Dock Maarten, next door to the Cruise Terminal. Before take-off the hillside tour tells the story of our island’s history and provides easy walking trails to multiple viewing decks for beautiful 360 degree ocean and island views. Learn more at www.pelicanpeaksxm.com and https://naturefoundationsxm.org.