The president of the House of Representatives, Carlos 'Johnny' Méndez Núñez, reported the start of the evaluation process for the removal of debris associated with the impact of Hurricane Maria in September 2017 on the coasts of the islands municipality of Vieques and Culebras, as well as on the beaches of Fajardo and Ceiba .
“After María, a successful program for the removal of sunken boats was implemented. However, there is still a lot of debris related to the devastation of that hurricane. Now, the second phase of this program is beginning, which includes, in addition to the removal of debris, the cleaning of marine areas and ecosystems on the coasts of Vieques and Culebra. This is a very important step in the recovery of the municipality islands, "commented the legislative leader in a press release.
" In Culebra, for example, there is still a lot of rubble in areas such as Playa Garbage, including plastic items and metallic, among others. Cleaning works there begin from the Playa Tortuga area to Punta del Este. The place is a niche for sea turtles. In the same way, work will be done in the Bottle Beach area in Culebrita, where there are still cylinders, as well as pieces of boats and other objects on its coast, "said the also representative for District # 36, which includes the municipalities of Río Grande, Luquillo, Fajardo, Ceiba, Vieques and Culebra.
While in Vieques, the work will focus on the removal of pieces from two huge boathouses in the famous Mosquito Bay and the area of Dakity .
“This phase also includes the removal of several boats that was not done in the first phase because the owners removed the toxic materials from them. Here the work will be concentrated in the south of the island municipality of Vieques, as well as in the Isleta Marina area in Fajardo, "added the President.
On the coasts of Ceiba the forest areas will be impacting Ceiba, particularly the mangrove region where the remnants of a vessel will also be removed .
The president cameral indicated that the new stage of the program began with the invitation to tender for the removal of these debris with approved funds and assigned by the Federal Emergency Management Agency, FEMA.
The document requesting proposals was issued in June and the evaluation of the areas to be impacted is proceeding rapidly by FEMA personnel as well as that the Department of Natural and Environmental Resources.
The maximum time to finish the removal and cleaning, according to the parameters of the proposal that also includes areas of Mayagüez, Salinas, Cabo R Eye and Saint John, it is two calendar years from the award of the contract.