Information Officer I (Ag.)
Department of Information and Public Relations
Minister for Natural Resources and Labour Honourable Melvin M. Turnbull is reminding the public that permission is needed for the commercial use of beaches in the Territory and for gatherings of over 50 people.
Honourable Melvin M. Turnbull in his statement on the Second Sitting of the Fifth Session of the Fourth House of Assembly stated that the Territory’s beaches are valuable and are expected to stand the test of time. He said his ministry is taking steps to improve their management but that the public must play its part.
Minister Turnbull said, “As part of the ministry’s management measures to ensure that the use of beaches does not degrade the beach environment, or result in conflicts between different users, the ministry has had a long-standing practice requiring permission for all commercial uses and certain non-commercial uses of the beach. That practice was formalised as policy in 2020 with Cabinet’s approval of The Virgin Islands Beach Policy, which is available on the ministry’s website: bvi.gov.vg/environment.”
Honourable Turnbull stated that his ministry is aware of unauthorised commercial activities that are carried out on beaches in the Territory and will be partnering with other governmental agencies to stop these unauthorised activities.
Honourable Turnbull said the ministry will not continue to tolerate such blatant violations around beach use and management.
“The ministry will collaborate with the Royal Virgin Islands Police Force, the Town and Country Planning Department, Trade Department, the Attorney General’s Chambers and other relevant authorities to uphold the Beach Policy and enforce all applicable legislation. This means that, in the future, persons can expect for unapproved events and commercial activities to be shut down,” the minister said.
“We all love our beaches and we benefit greatly from them but those benefits will soon stop flowing if as a community we don’t quickly learn to work together to respect the beach environment and fellow beach users,” Honourable Turnbull said. He urged the public to partner with the ministry by supporting its efforts to enhance beach management in the Territory for everyone’s benefit and enjoyment.
To view the minister’s full statement, visit the Government of the Virgin Island’s website at www.bvi.gov.vg.
The Ministry of Natural Resources and Labour continues to manage the natural resources in the Territory in a manner that ensures long-term sustainability.