Barbuda Has To Completely Rebuild After Hurricane Irma

When Hurricane Irma hit Barbuda, it left the Caribbean island uninhabitable and, just two days later, deserted for the first time in 300 years.

Nearly every one of the almost 2,000 Barbudans was forced to evacuate. Many are still in Antigua, Barbuda’s much more developed and richer sister island. There they live with friends, family or in a number of refugee camps that dot the island.

Now Barbuda doesn’t just face rebuilding—it will likely have to completely remake itself. Up until now the island has remained largely untouched, thanks to quirky rules about land ownership that date back to the end of slavery. They've kept it green, but also prevented it from developing a sustainable economy. Without enough money coming from within or abroad, the rebuilding process is barely inching along.

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