Environment: Fighting Blight in Paradise

The U.S. and its Caribbean neighbors try to save a precious sea

Glittering islands in the sun. Long stretches of sandy, palm-shaded beaches. Azure waters flecked with colorful sails. These are the popular, still largely correct, tourist-poster views of that playground of the New World: the Caribbean. Sadly, in recent years less enticing images have begun to intrude. They show thick plumes of exhaust spilling from new oil refineries; bubbling, dark cesspools of untreated wastes only a hop away from beaches jammed by tourists; mountainsides scarred by open-pit mining and hardscrabble agricultural plots. The...

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