The Island No One Owns

30 minutes

If you want to build a house on the Caribbean island of Barbuda, you can just put up a fence wherever you want, and have it. You don’t pay for it. You don’t sign for anything. You just have to be Barbudan. Barbudans have held their pink sand paradise “in common” since the 1800s. No titles. No paperwork.

But on the heels of a major disaster, the Prime Minister has come up with a new plan. He wants to sell Barbudans the plot of land they’ve been living on for one Eastern Caribbean dollar and give them legally binding property titles they can take to a bank, to help rebuild. A lot of Barbudans don’t want the deal, though. I team up with reporter Sarah Gonzalez from NPR’s Planet Money podcast to tell the story.

Visit my website to see some photos from our trip to Barbuda.

Far From Home is a podcast where award-winning public radio journalist Scott Gurian visits parts of the world that most people never think about and tells stories they've never heard. For more info, visit farfromhomepodcast.org

More episodes from Far From Home

How you can listen to this podcast

You can listen to episodes right here on the website, or if you prefer, in a podcast app. Listening in an app makes it easier to keep track of what you’ve already heard, listen without using your data plan and many other conveniences.

Recommended apps
Start listening to Far From Home: Season 1 Trailer
1:56
Start listening to Far From Home: Season 1 Trailer
1:56