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CONGRATS TO THE NEW GOVERNMENT on its overwhelming mandate. To whom much is given, much is expected and there can be no unnecessary excuses for incompetence or the ability to get things done.
Former United States President Barack Obama, in addressing the alumni of Morehouse University, spoke the following words: “I understand there’s a common fraternity creed here at Morehouse – ‘Excuses are tools of the incompetent used to build bridges to nowhere and monuments of nothingness’. Well, we’ve got no time for excuses.”
The aforementioned preamble was necessary to set the tone of my plea for environmental justice. Our continued sustenance and existence depend on a healthy and sustainable environment.
Recently, Prime Minister Mia Mottley’s Government had the foresight during its Mini-Budget to a quasi polluter pay tax. However, it does not go far enough, for it does not treat to waste reduction or waste diversion from costly landfills.
Barbados needs now, more than ever, legislated recycling geared towards a circular economy. With the circular economy we can refurbish and repair rather than be wasteful and discard. It’s not rocket science to discern that the linear economy of a cradle-to-grave mentality drains foreign reserves, harms our ecosystem while depleting natural resources.
Therefore, I am appealing to the Government to impose a polluter-pays-tax on those industries and companies which, by their business practices, negatively impact our environment. Thus, car companies, importers of single-use plastic bags and importers of petroleum products should be made to pay for their trade’s impact on our vulnerable environment. We will not get the aforementioned businesses to be environmentally responsible until we hit them
where it hurts.
Finally, let me say that any business which focuses only on profit is a poor company. Corporate social responsibility is not a fancy catchphrase; it is now a mandated way of business operations for Fortune 500 companies.
– KAMMIE HOLDER