ENVIRONMENT & NATURAL RESOURCES COMMITTEE AND HIGHWAYS AUTHORITY MEETING

The monthly meetings of the Environmental and Natural Resources Committee (ENRC) and the Highways Authority were held on Thursday, 20 September 2018.

Parking and traffic calming issues throughout Jamestown are continuously raised with the Committee. Proposals for additional parking in Upper Jamestown are now with the Planning Office for consideration.

The taxi parks behind the Canister were discussed. Approval was given for three parks to be reserved for 24-hour parking, whilst other taxi parks will be time restricted to enable wider use by the public. This arrangement will be continuously monitored.

The Chairman reported that the three month trial-period for the pedestrian crossing near The Canister had elapsed. Members noted that the crossing has worked well and had been accepted by the public, although there have been some minor hiccups. There were no adverse comments from the general public, although there is some concern about the narrow pavement adjacent to the buildings. Members agreed to do further publicity aimed at vehicle users and pedestrians on how the crossing should be used.

The Committee discussed and approved a request from Solomon's for their Greenland's Store, following advice from the SHG Fire Inspector. Approval was given to paint a 'Keep Clear' sign outside the Napoleon Street exit and to place 'Keep Access Clear at all Times' on the doors. The Fire Service also advised that a 3ft walkway is required by law for emergency exit; therefore parks in Henry's car park will be re-aligned to enable removable bollards to be installed to maintain access to the double doors.

Street lighting in Napoleon Street was discussed and it was reported that there is a problem with the underground electrical cable supplying these lights. The Roads Manager is in discussion with Connect St Helena. He reported that consideration might be given to installing solar lighting.

Approval was given to the Environmental Risk Manager to erect a direction sign for the Horse Point Landfill Site (HPLS). This sign will be placed near the junction to the Millennium Forest and HPLS.

Safety concerns about the Jamestown Run were discussed, especially in light of the most recent rains and the increased water flow in The Run. The directorate had made the public aware that The Run had become a prohibited area until further notice.

The Chief Environmental Officer, assisted by the Nurseries Officer, gave an update on the Plant Propagation Policy. It was noted that some parts of the Policy needed refreshing in light of current work being done on our endemic plants. The Chief Environmental Officer gave an update on the 'Namibian Ice plant,' an invasive species believed to have been introduced to the Island in river and dune sand imported by Basil Read during Airport construction. Although the sand had been fumigated, some seeds had survived. Over the last two years large numbers have been discovered on Prosperous Bay Plain and have subsequently been destroyed.

Members were informed that a location for a new Laboratory to support the Marine Protected Areas and the Blue Belt programme has now been identified. The Laboratory will be situated in the freight terminal and the space will be shared with the St Helena National Trust and Blue Marine.

The Environmental Risk Manager presented a draft Press Release, a draft letter for businesses, and a calculation sheet, for the potential cost recovery of charging for the collection of waste with only the first 240litre domestic bin per week being collected free of charge. Members felt this will incite the general public to look at managing and reducing their waste and businesses might reconsider their imports and types of packaging for the same reason. This will also incentivise the public and businesses to rethink and recycle in order to extend the life of the HPLS. This was approved and it was agreed that the commencement date should be 1 January 2019, giving the public and businesses adequate time to be informed and to make adjustments to the amount and type of waste they wish to dispose of.

Source: St Helena Government

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