Residents and schools along the New River in the Corozal District are advised to prepare for the arrival of contaminants from the Orange Walk area. The advice came via a press conference held by the Department of the Environment this morning in Orange Walk Town. While residents are being alerted, the Department of the Environment says the situation will not be as dire as the sea will dilute the pollutants. Deputy Chief Environmental Officer, Edgar Ek, says the flow of the contaminants is unavoidable but there is no need for panic.
Edgar Ek, Deputy Chief Environmental Officer, Department of Environment: “We know for sure that it’s approaching Caledonia Village hence yesterday we went and met with the principal of Caledonia and the chairman of Caledonia to share information as to what is the problem, what to expect and not to panic because that is what we want to avoid, people panicking over something that we know is coming. Of course it’s a huge concern for the department however there is nothing much we can do to stop it from flowing into the Corozal Bay. We are not sure to what extent the damages will be hence we are also doing water quality analysis along with SACD to conduct baseline water quality analysis from Corozal Bay going way down to headwaters; that will give us an indication as to how the water quality stands and then we will be monitoring once all of these reach the bay we will continue to do monitoring to evaluate and then I think we will have to find a strategy on how to deal with the problem.”