Dominica-Rosalie Forest Eco LodgeFebruary 3rd, 2011
Rosalie Forest Eco Lodge is situated in an environment of outstanding natural beauty, and one of our most fundamental aims is to live in harmony with, and have as little harmful impact on, those surroundings as possible.
Rosalie Forest Eco Lodge is a small lodge situated in an environment of outstanding natural beauty, set in the heart of Rosalie rainforest, surrounded by clean rivers and jungle trails, leading to stunning waterfalls and lakes, and on the edge of the Morne Trois Pitons National Park World Heritage Site.
One of our most fundamental aims is to live in harmony with, and have as little harmful impact on, those surroundings as possible. We recognize that our business has an important role to play in protecting and enhancing the environment for guests and the residents of the local community.
In keeping with this goal, every aspect of the project has the environment in mind. We espouse a sustainable lifestyle, minimizing our consumption of all resources, using renewable energy, and monitoring all systems. We compost all kitchen and garden waste, try to avoid purchasing packaged goods, shop locally, recycle and use biodegradable products, and strive to keep our waste products to a minimum.
An important aspect of this policy is to involve the local community. Our employees come from local villages, and we train them in sustainable living. We are trying to showcase environmentally sound practices, hosting free school visits and giving guided tours and workshops, to all interested parties, explaining renewable energy, organic farming, and the sustainable lifestyle in general, as well as being involved in various local community projects.
We aim to comply fully with, and go beyond, all environmental laws and regulations, to review our policy and practices annually and to communicate relevant information to all interested parties, from guests and locals up to government officials. We hope we can help Dominica retain its still relatively unspoilt environment, and move into a greener future.
|As a member of pack for a purpose, we encourage all guests to donate small itmes to our worthwhile community causes|
SUMMARY OF OUR ENVIRONMENTAL WORK :
- The eco work began from the start, reclaiming spoilt land which had been destroyed by chemicals used by the banana farmer whom I bought the land from.
- Composting began on day 1 and continues today.
- All soaps, washing liquids and cleaning products are eco friendly and biodegradable.
- We use no chemicals whatsoever on land or anywhere else (except for termites!).
- Much of our electricity is solar power.
- We use hydro power for our main property as well
- and have a wind turbine powering our forest accommodations
- We use solar hot water heating systems.
- We pump our water supply from one of the pristine rivers bordering our land, using a solar powered pump, which works in silence to avoid disturbing the surrounding natural habitats.
- We also have a rainwater collection system in the forest.
- We separate all garbage and compost everything, helping our young gardens flourish.
- We have recycled a damaged water tank for use as an eco shower unit.
- We employ 100% local people.
- We offer community based activities where guests get a true taste of village life … and villagers earn a few dollars !
- We contribute to various village activities.
- We run a village preschool scholarship fund
- We have arranged for donations of over 500 computers to the schools in Dominica, through our NGO, SLIC.
- We sponsored various village sports teams.
- We sponsor one of the local village bands and showcase them here, at Rosalie Forest, occasionally.
- We bought a washing machine for a local lady and set her up in her own laundry business.
- We helped create a new village library using books donated by our guests, installed the electricity for them and donated all necessary supplies for that job.
- We sponsored the community internet cafe.
- We run environment education workshops for local people and tourists on solar hot water heating systems, organic farming, and general renewable energy usage, through our registered NGO The Sustainable Living Initiative, and offer loans graduates to buy their own green renewable energy systems for their homes, and they run a workshop when they instal the system.
- We offer free eco educational tours of the lodge for all schools in Dominica.
- We have produced a basic ecotourism educational book on all of our eco systems for our guest in order to increase their environmental awareness.
- We have a package deal where all of the activities involve learning about local village life, and each activity is held in the village and is run by the villagers who receive a fair income for their efforts, and our guests get a true taste for village life. True ecotourism.
- As well as an eco learning package offering workshops in all forms of renewable energy
- Our grey water passes through grease traps, which are changed daily to help our compost system and protect our waste water leachfield soakaways.
- We monitor daily our water, electricity, gas, solid waste and paper consumption, and aim to continuously reduce our usage to protect the environment.
- Our camping facilities include a composting toilet.
- We also use state of the art non-electric no water composting toilets.
One non-eco exception – do you have the answer for us?
One major problem we face is termites. Living in the tropics it is impossible to avoid them at all times. Bearing this in mind, a member of staff monitors every building daily, to check for wood ants and termites. Normally, we see them when they are on the concrete foundations, before they are inside the wood. By catching them before they eat the wood, we can pour vinegar on the foundations, and it scares them away and they run back to the soil.
However, occasionally, we miss them or they run too fast, and by the time we notice they are already in the wood. On these rare occasions, we have taken the decision to slightly bend our eco principles, and we have used chemical products to stop them. The choice is simple, lose a house, or use the chemical product; losing the house means using a lot more wood to build another one, and so the chemical seems the wiser choice. We are constantly researching to find an alternative method; if you know of one, please tell us!
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