Sunday, February 2, 2014

FTV February 2

We arrived in Barbados excited to get back into the Caribbean water. Just like we did for Curacao the students manned the rails and there were mooring stations to secure us to the pier.

We have some great excursions for the cadets in Barbados. They will have the opportunity to go on zip lining and cave tours. The scuba club will also have the opportunity to go diving in world famous reefs. Also as we did in Curacao the MMA soccer team will have a friendly match against the island of Barbados. Since we are in Barbados during the Super Bowl, the U.S. Marines stationed at the embassy in Barbados have extended an invite to cadets on board the T.S. Kennedy to join in their Super Bowl Party as the Broncos and Seahawks battle it out on the gridiron.  On my freshman cruise I came to Barbados and I couldn’t be more excited to be back I’ll follow up on the excursions and super bowl party over the next couple days.  Let the fun begin.

When Barbados was discovered it was a heavily forested island. The early settlers, more concerned with survival than conservation, proceeded to clear the forest, using the wood both for shelter and sustenance. Erecting their wooden shacks and cooking on firewood took its toll on the trees and gradually the 106,000 acres of forested terrain shrunk, leaving only 46 acres of the original forest cover intact… Turner Hall Woods. Turners Hall Woods survives as one of the last remnants of the dense tropical forest which covered Barbados at the time of the first settlement in 1627. Turner Hall Woods is home to handsome stands of the Cabbage Palm, Sandbox and Silk Cotton tree.
The world's rainforests are currently disappearing at a rate of 6000 acres every hour (this is about 4000 football fields per hour).   When these forests are cut down, the plants and animals that live in the forests are destroyed, and some species are at risk of being made extinct.  Further, as the large-scale harvesting of lumber from the rain forests continues, the balance of the earth's eco-system is disrupted.  We need the rain forests to produce oxygen and clean the atmosphere to help us breathe.  We also know that the earth's climate can be affected, as well as the water cycle.  Rainforests also provide us with many valuable medicinal plants, and may be a source of a cure from some deadly diseases.
The National Conservation Commission was established in 1970 and is in charge of environmental management. Its functions are many and varied, and include:  the conservation of the natural beauty, topographic features, historic buildings, sites and monuments of Barbados the control, maintenance and development of public parks, public gardens, and beaches of Barbados.

Learn more about preserving rainforests:

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