By Johneil Ferguson:
During the short time we've been here, I quickly realized that Union Island is a close-knit island with beautiful flora and fauna. Despite their amazing wildlife and friendly people, the island is clearly nothing like the USA. Trash on the island is a huge problem though. While on the docks the last few days I've seen a lot of plastic in the water that washed up to shore, plots of land with scraps and trash and gutters on the road filled with food wrappers. Keeping things sanitary here is a major problem but, there are people on the island who are trying to make a change to the cleanliness of the island. On the other side of the island, small organizations here have made giant strides to help this pollution issue by providing trash pickup to areas that have struggled with trash pollution. Steps like this are slowly but surely leading the island to towards better sanitation and an even more beautiful island!
The authors of this blog are students enrolled in Tropical Marine Ecology and Conservation, field courses run in the Caribbean by the University of South Florida. In 2019 and 2021, the course went to the Carmabi research station in Curaçao and dived around the island over a 10-day period, for training and to carry out research projects. In 2018, the group went to Soufriere, Saint Lucia, and took part in various projects in partnership with the Soufriere Marine Management Association. In this blog, students will document their activities and how they relate to course material.