STX Condo Row Beach Closed
This morning, there were signs on the beach at Club St. Croix and Sugar Beach (possibly Mill Harbour and Colony Cove, as well):
"BEACH CLOSED UNTIL FURTHER NOTICE"
Any idea why?
Geeze, Ed, guess I should walk the beach more often! I saw the maintenaince men out there raking up the seaweed as usual this morning around 07:00 and there were several people sunbathing when I came home for lunch. No rowdy partiers down there last night that I could hear on this end. But, I can't see much of the beach from this unit...
They're down-current from WAPA. Probably a dump over the reef. I lived at Mill Harbor for a couple of years, and even on the days when the beach wasn't "closed", my ankles would frequently get REALLY itchy and red after a stroll.
No see ums?
Not during the day, and not on that stretch of beach. Too much wind.
Good guess though. My money's on sewage. I walked in the water, not on the sand.
Waste Management has been illegally discharging for years. 4 years ago, during a Triathlon I saw feces on a Condo Row Beach. I called WM and no one could give me a definitive answer about why this was ongoing. I called EPA in PR and 1st asked if WM had a permit to discharge, the answer was, "not to their knowledge". I reported what I saw and waited for a call back from the PR Director. No call. I called EPA NY and described the situation and my frustration with the non-responsive WM and EPA PR. A Deputy Director called a few days later and informed me that they had been in contact with both EPA PR and WM and that the situation was being addressed. The discharge stopped and the beach gradually recovered. Every time there has been a discharge over the past 4 years I make those calls. Finally last spring WM was put under a court order to stop all discharges and report any discharges, repair all pump stations and insure emergency pumps and power was operable. Since then there has been some discharges due to heavy rain because the storm water catch basins are draining in to sewerage system. With the installation of the new force main and the rehab of the LBJ pump station there "should" be no more discharge, but if there is, I'll be all over them again and again. Clean water is essential to the reef system and the public health and should be one of the first priorities of the Govt.
Thank you Bombi for the extra effort. I have tried several times over the years to get EPA attention about the sewage outfall problem on St Croix. Twenty years ago the sewage problem was discussed but the government never did much. It is sad that one of the most beautiful beaches in the world has been constantly covered in raw sewage. It's good to see some kind of action, but more needs to be done.
Keep up the good work, we should all join in your effort.
The signs were removed yesterday, Friday. 🙂