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West End, Roatán


Conservation benefit: Reduced water pollution and reef damage from untreated wastewater

Community benefit: Pumps for community sewage treatment plant

Date Approved: 02.2017


This project protects ocean ecosystems, making coastal communities more economically and physically secure in the face of climate change.

Roatán, the largest of the three Bay Islands of Honduras, is surrounded by more than 95 square kilometers of coral reefs. Tourism is one of its main industries; more than 860,000 tourists (most from cruise ships) arrived on Roatán in 2013. Unfortunately, basic environmental protections, including sewage treatment, have not kept pace with fast-growing tourism.

Our local nonprofit partner, Polo’s Water Association, has been managing potable water for West End since 2005. It requested a Seacology grant to replace failing equipment at the sewage treatment plant.

The two new pumps will ensure that the plant runs at full capacity. This will prevent 19 million gallons of untreated sewage each year from polluting the water, damaging human health and the coral reef ecosystem. These pumps should last five to six years and treat 95 to 114 million gallons of sewage over that period.

Project Updates

July 2017

This project is now complete. The new pumps have been installed and are working to clean polluted water before it can be discharged into the ocean.

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