Save Guanaja for Future Generations! Improve, not Sacrifice!

  • by: Miguel Deleon
  • recipient: Guanaja's local municipality and residents

Guanaja is one of the Bay Islands of Honduras and is in the Caribbean. Christopher Columbus discovered Isla Guanaja on July 30, 1502, on his fourth and final voyage of discovery. Columbus found excellent water and noted that he had, “never tasted water of better quality.” Currently, there is still access to fresh water on Guanaja, and several waterfalls can be seen.

Tourism is confined to a handful of small resorts that cater to divers, snorkelers and adventure travelers. The island's warm, clear waters support an extensive coral reef that is part of the Mesoamerican Barrier Reef and second only to the Great Barrier Reef off the coasts of Australia.

Unfortunately, our island is in danger of sacrificing the very things that sets it apart from other over-developed Caribbean islands. For over 100 years, the island community survived without any land motor vehicles. Only in the past couple of decades, have vehicles begun to appear on the island ever since 1 major road was constructed.

There’s this misconception that more roads and cars will equate to progress and more tourists. When in reality, it will equate to increased population, stress on freshwater supply, long-term environmental effects from increased wastes, improperly disposed of motor fluids and tires.

Help us protect this very precious place by showing your support for this cause. Guanaja was never meant to have roads and cars!

Like any Caribbean island, the island of Guanaja is intrinsically defined by the salt water that surrounds it and its own fresh water source from the mountain streams. Not only has the water shaped and molded the island itself, but it has also defined the experience of those that visit the island, as well as those that call the Guanaja their home.

Guanaja’s lost in time landscape and unique culture has always revolved around the water and lack of over-development. Remembering when drinking directly from the freshwater streams and jumping into the sea from the town docks posed no health concerns. We cannot afford to be irresponsible by sacrificing this very crucial natural resource and our livelihood in the name of progress.

In order to preserve Guanaja and improve upon it going forward, I call upon you to act strongly and swiftly regarding the following important proposals.

First, I urge you to implement an immediate ban on any further motor vehicles from entering the island. We cannot allow the continued contamination of our land and water supply without strictly enforced regulations.

Secondly, for the existing motor vehicles on the island, enforce all driving and environmental laws, including valid driver’s license, registration documents, insurance documents and proper disposal of vehicle fluids and tires.

Please keep in mind that everyone who has ever come to Guanaja came for what the island already offers; extraordinarily blue water, beautiful beaches, vibrant coral reefs, friendly locals, and an escape from the generic, over-developed landscape found elsewhere in the region. Protecting and improving upon Guanaja’s ecological health and beauty is truly in the best interests of the island’s economy, its people, and all those who cherish their time there.

Update #47 years ago
A new website is being created to continue our efforts by providing more information and visuals on why this is an important crusade. Please visit the site and share it.
Update #37 years ago
All- I am glad to announce that the first steps to the goal of making Guanaja a car-free island have been taken. The local government office provided their response to the petition which included voted on and unanimously approved provisions to monitor vehicular waste, vehicle sizes, among others. Our goal is still to be car-free. Please continue to share for more signatures. Thanks
Update #27 years ago
Hoping to present petition to Mayor and city council members on Tuesday. Let's shoot for 500+ signatures, please share. Thank you!
Update #17 years ago
Thank you all who have signed. Your signatures show that there is a genuine concern from both locals and non-locals to protect Guanaja!

Please share and ask at least 5 family members or friends to sign!
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