The Coalition to Protect Clifton Bay is a group of concerned individuals and organizations that are committed to preserving and protecting Clifton Bay and other common marine environments surrounding New Providence Island.
From a maritime cargo facility proposed in the early 1990s to sprawling residential development proposed in the late 1990s, this ecologically sensitive and culturally important area has faced a number of threats over the years.
In the late 1990s, a group proposed building a 600-home golf course development on the 200 undeveloped acres of Clifton Cay. The development would have disrupted delicate ecosystems and disturbed historic sites dating back more than a thousand years to the time that Lucayan Indian villages dotted the coastline on the western edge of New Providence Island.
A report to the Natural Resources Defense Council issued in 2000 found development of this crucial piece of shoreline would be “detrimental to the two most important coastal resources in The Bahamas: sandy beaches and living coral reefs.”
Faced with the potential loss of what the New York Times quoted an archaeologist describing as a veritable Rosetta Stone for understanding life on the island from ancient times through 18th Century plantation life, a group of motivated Bahamians, environmentalists, preservationists and ultimately government officials came together to protect the area.
The result was the establishment of the Clifton Heritage Authority in 2004. The authority established the 200-acre Clifton Heritage National Park. The park stands as a testament to the importance Bahamians place on preserving the natural beauty of their land and habitat while also maintaining a direct connection to their history.
Thanks to the collective efforts of the Bahamian government, native Bahamians, environmentalists and conservation organizations, public access for local Bahamians to one of the last public beaches in New Providence was preserved and wetlands, tropical hardwood forests and valuable living coral reefs in the bay’s marine system have been protected.
Unfortunately, substantive new threats to Clifton Bay and other common marine environments have arisen. The Coalition to Protect Clifton Bay has been formed by a diverse group of stakeholders to help combat such threats. Join us in our efforts to protect our common marine environment!