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Abaco News
Elbow Reef Lighthouse celebrating 150 years with June 24 event
Submitted by AbacoBuzz   
Monday, 26 May 2014 08:28

ELBOW CAY, Abaco -- The Lighthouse Society is going to recognize this milestone by producing a celebration that will take place on Tuesday, June 24th, 2014. 3:00pm to 8:00pm at the site of the Elbow Reef Lighthouse, on Elbow Cay, Abaco, Bahamas.  The celebration will include artists, fun packed activities, historic education, boutique items, food and drinks to mark this historic occasion.

The Elbow Reef Lightstation is the ONLY remaining lighthouse in the world to be manually operated and fueled with kerosene.  This iconic, red and white lighthouse is known and loved throughout Abaco and the world. This festival will commemorate its 150th birthday. The event is being produced by board members, sponsors, local businesses and volunteers, all to show their thankful support to this vital part of the Abaco community and its maritime heritage.

Bahamian special needs school celebrated in international documentary
Submitted by DP&A   
Saturday, 26 April 2014 07:25

MARSH HARBOUR, Abaco -- Every Child Counts, a pioneering special needs school in Abaco which refuses to leave any child behind, has become the subject of an international documentary.

The film began with veteran independent film director Wendy Loten, who partnered with Ryerson University after discovering a shared interest in the school. The three-year project chronicles the journey from typical island school to a beacon of hope for disabled children faced with limited educational options. As the name suggests, the school excludes no child because of financial or other limitations.

The world premiere of the documentary will take place in Nassau this Saturday, April 26 at 7pm at the National Art Gallery of the Bahamas and will be attended by the president of Ryerson.

It was filmed by a professional Canadian television team who originally intended to make a short fundraising video, but quickly realized that the inspirational story has a much broader appeal.

The premiere coincides with recent efforts by the Bahamian government to pass legislation concerning disability issues, in particular providing for the educational needs of special needs children.

Learning more about Treasure Cay creek area
Submitted by Barefoot Marketing   
Thursday, 17 April 2014 07:25

By: Abaco Defenders

TREASURE CAY, Abaco -- Formed around concerns about unregulated development, Abaco Defenders took a step forward by asking an independent scientist to visit Sand Banks/Gunpowder Creek in Treasure Cay to verify the health of and life in the creek.

When work was done here by Treasure Sands, no environmental impact study was performed, so we, as a community, had no way of knowing how this creek would be affected, and what was in it to affect. Since the Government and the developer were not providing that information we decided to try and get it for ourselves.

Zach Zuckerman, a researcher for the Cape Eleuthera Institute volunteered to come up and do a quick survey of the creek area on Saturday, April 5th.  Olivia Patterson, the Program Coordinator from Friends of the Environment joined him and a group from Treasure Cay to kayak and snorkel through the creeks. Together they found a creek teeming with life.

He stated that as Sand Banks Creek contains dense turtle grass the area supports a high density of turtles. Throughout the day they saw at least 75-100 turtles of three species.  There is a high density of sub-adult lemon sharks, as they were able to see more than 25 individuals ranging 3-6 feet in length. The creek boasts large areas of submerged mangrove prop roots, and a variety of habitat types, which is important to a healthy creek system. Particular areas contained dense mats of Laurencia algae which are critical habitat for the juvenile Nassau grouper that were observed in ledge and grass habitats. Crawfish ranging from juvenile to harvest-able size were present in rock ledges as well as ledges found beneath red mangrove roots. Medium to large mutton and adult grey snapper were also in abundance, which are important mid range predators to assist in keeping the system healthy. Bonefish, an important species for eco tourism, were also found in healthy numbers.

Central Abaco sixth graders call on the Governor General
Submitted by BIS   
Wednesday, 16 April 2014 07:34

NASSAU, Bahamas -- Sixth grade students from the Central Abaco Primary School paid a courtesy call on His Excellency the Governor General Sir Arthur Foulkes at Government House on Tuesday, April 15, 2014. Also present were Paul Knowles, grade 6 teacher; Eleanor Hield, grade 6 teacher; Keva McKintosh, Vice Principal and Brieth Young, Office Staff. (BIS PHOTO/Letisha Henderson)

Fox Town Primary students visit the Governor General
Submitted by BIS   
Tuesday, 15 April 2014 07:26

NASSAU, Bahamas -- His Excellency the Governor General Sir Arthur Foulkes welcomes Grade 4, 5 and 6 students from Fox Town Primary School, Abaco to Government House on Monday, April 14, 2014. They were accompanied by Ms. Sheila Thomas, teacher of Grade 5 and 6; Ms. Nadia McDermott, Grade 4 teacher; Ms. Claudette Adderley, Grade 3 teacher and a parent, Ms. Nicola Mills. (BIS PHOTO/Letisha Henderson)

Chinese Harbour Engineering Company engages Bahamian firm on North Abaco Port project
Submitted by Inderia Saunders   
Monday, 14 April 2014 08:43

ABACO, Bahamas — Chinese Harbour Engineering Company (CHEC) has engaged the expertise of local Engineering firm Caribbean Coastal Services Ltd. (CCS) as the $39 million North Abaco Port project moves one step closer to ground breaking.

The Bahamian Engineering firm will review, comment, stamp and seal CHEC’s designs for the Abaco port to make sure all the drawings that are handed into the Ministry of Public Works will comply with all the local and relevant laws and codes.

Principal of CHEC Bahamas Felix Chang said support from CCS will enhance the award-winning international engineering firm’s ability to fulfill all the country requirements for this port development.

“We are pleased to establish a mutually beneficial business relationship with Caribbean Coastal Services the way we have with other local firms,” said Mr. Chang. “We look forward to completing our project to the high standards that both firms are known for.”

Construction on the North Abaco Port project is expected to be completed in roughly two years and is to be funded by the Export Import Bank of China and the government of The Bahamas. A minimum of one-third of the project’s investment will be shared throughout the community directly and indirectly during the construction phase.

Abaco Chief Councilor: Treasure Cay environmental damage ‘irreparable, heartbreaking’
Submitted by DP&A   
Wednesday, 09 April 2014 11:21

Left photo shows the wetlands in pristine conditionRight photo shows the destruction of acres of wetlands, slashed by heavy equipment on a site being developed under expansion plans by a resort known as Treasure Sands despite a cease and desist order by government. TREASURE CAY, Abaco -- Abaco’s Chief Councilor today labelled as “heartbreaking” the destruction of acres of wetlands, slashed by heavy equipment on a site being developed under expansion plans by a resort known as Treasure Sands despite a cease and desist order by government.

“I don’t blame the developer,” says North Abaco Chief Councilor Gary Smith. “Nor do I blame the government in Nassau. The Minister of Finance for Investments Khaalis Rolle did the proper and honourable thing and we are very grateful to him for recognizing that protecting the environment and proceeding with the right permits is important for the long-term sustainable growth and development of any community.”

But something thwarted the delivery of the cease and desist order once it got to Abaco, he said, and an investigation is ongoing to learn why it was not presented to the developer for some three weeks after it arrived, enough time for centuries of mangrove, wetlands and hardwood forests to be mowed down. The Abaco Council and two environmental groups, Abaco Defenders and Save The Bays, are trying to get to the bottom of the delay.

“In the three weeks between when the cease and desist order was signed and when it was actually presented to the developer, irreparable damage was done to the wetlands in Treasure Cay,” said Smith. “Before, this place was a haven -- a sanctuary for birds and bonefish. You could see the nurse sharks coming in and the baby nurse sharks. The wetlands were the nursery for all sorts of species.” The Bahamas National Trust had plans to turn the area into a national park. Today, the scarfed land is a stark reminder, said Smith, of how quickly something that took centuries to form can be wiped out.

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