Captain Bryan spreads net

| 21/04/2011

(CNS):The man spearheading the campaign to Save Cayman and in particular the North Sound has called on the help of a number of international environmental groups. Captain Bryan Ebanks, who has thrown himself into the cause of protecting the area from potential dredging proposed by government, says that he has made contact with three different non-governmental organisations in Australia, USA and UK in order to draw attention to the potential threat to Grand Cayman’s reef. The reef surrounding Cayman is one of the few remaining unbroken reefs in the region and the sea captain come environmental activist says that he believes these organisations will be able to help raise support on the world stage.(PhotoDennie WarrenJr)

Speaking at a meeting of the Concerned Citizens Group in West Bay on Tuesday evening, Ebanks explained that he was trying to engage international groups that have an interest in marine conservation to take up the cause. Answering questions raised by former political candidate in the district, Woody Da Costa, who said the quality of the reef would certainly warrant attention from global organisations, Ebanks confirmed that the campaigners were hoping to enlist interest from such groups.

Around the world there are many non-government organisations, charities, pressure and research groups that are focused on trying to protect and preserve reefs. Many of these NGOs have become political movements, campaigning for environmental laws and rights as well as actively opposing the destruction of the earth’s natural resources, with chapters and branches in many countries.

There are currently no real environmental groups in the Cayman Islands that are pursuing a green agenda, with the exception of the National Trust, which because of its funding from government remains relatively low key. There are growing numbers of concerned residents, however, that believe Cayman is in desperate need to form an environmental group which could eventually field a candidate for election to give what is currently an uncoordinated but growing green movement a voice on the islands’ political stage and keep up the pressure on government to consider the green agenda.

Since the significant organised opposition in May 2008 to the PPM government’s proposal to put a road through the ironwood forest in George Town, to which the then minister, MLA Arden McLean took heed and cancelled the plan, the people willing to rally around a cause to protect the environment has continued to grow. As yet, however, no green or environmental NGO has been formed as a focal point that can also be vociferous in its opposition to environmental degradation without fear of financial repercussions.

During the meeting on Tuesday, as Ebanks set out the need to protect the Sound, the captain said he needed help and support from the community to keep the Save Cayman campaign going.

Although the national conservation bill remains in limbo, despite the minister saying he would bring it to the Legislative Assembly last year, there are more protections in Cayman for marine environments. However, there are no specific laws preventing the government from cutting through the reef, which is what it proposes to do with regards to the channel in the North Sound and the commercial seaport in East End.

Despite claims by the premier to the contrary, there is a large body of literature from the scientific community about the detrimental impact of dredging on reefs and the marine environment in general.

Since his campaign started, Captain Bryan has pointed out that in the case of the Cayman Islands the damage will not just be to the reef and the water quality but it could also threaten what he calls the country’s national treasure – the Sandbar and Stingray City. 

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Category: Science and Nature

Comments (24)

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  1. Alan Nivia says:

    Contacting groups in the UK and the US is the way to go.  The FCO can stop Mac doing anything.  A few choice stories in the serious UK press would be a great start for political momentum in England.  If there are mutterings from London against this project the finance will disappear overnight.

  2. nauticalone says:

    Excellent work Capt. Bryan!

  3. UDP Supporter says:

    This man is clearly not a supporter of our great Premier and will do anything to try to undermine his plans and get in the media spotlight. We need more development in these islands to create jobs for our Caymanian people (the oil refinery and the channel in the North Sound are great ideas). It’s the environment or jobs and money. I prefer jobs and money!

    • New secret admirer says:

      You gotta be joking. You must me family to Mckeeva ! No Road closing, NO channel and no Oil refinery ( sorry I gotta laugh at this one). NADA. The Day we decide we have enough is getting nearer. We will need to have our friends form West Bay at the forefront so he don’t shoot at us.

    • Q says:

      There’s a delicate balance here. Yes, I agree, opportunities for Caymanians are important. However, I do not agree that these opportunities should come at the cost of ruining the environment. If this comes to fruition, what do you think will happen to the Island when the next hurricane comes through here? I can certainly guarantee you that there will be no opportunities if the Island is wiped out. That will happen if this project goes ahead – total Island wide devastation. This project is a very short-sighted.

    • nauticalone says:

      Money and jobs will come!…. for many generations (with us protecting our environment) whereas the destruction of our environment (by such ideas as oil refineries and others recently announced by Mac) will surely destroy Cayman!

      What he should be doing is creating an atmosphere for learned persons to address projects such as the GT Port extention (not including any EE Port), Medical Tourism (in a fair and sustainable manner) and the “Technology Park” and of course completing the schools and coming up with a sustainable solution for Mt. Trashmore.

      Not overstepping his abilities (which i admit isn’t difficult for anyone to do) by announcing every hair-brained idea that every would-be investor suggests.

  4. Caymanian Watersports Captain says:

    If this dredging becomes imminent, myself and other watersports operators will take our boats by the dozens and anchor them off in front of the proposed deep channel, to prevent this destruction from taking place in our beautiful North Sound.

    In so doing, we will also stop all of our Stingray City tours catering to cruise ship arrivals and stay over tourist’s for a period of time, in the interest of enviornmental preservation, the protection our own livelihood and to preserve our economic viability as Watersports Operators for years to come.

    We are already in discussions about this as Watersports Operators, so please take careful note Mr. Premier, Mr Kenneth Dart, Mr. Michael Ryan and others.

    We will also if necessary, urge our North Sound tour clients whom are many, (Caymanians, residents and tourist’s alike) to boycott all business dealings with properties or persons associated with this proposed dredging in the North Sound.

    • Anonymous says:

      A Chinese dredge sunk over the edge of the drop-off would make a good reef for all those deep-sea creatures that haven’t even been discovered yet.

  5. oooohhhhh says:

    Mac gonna fix you!

    • BORN FREE says:

      The Capt. is going to need as much help as possible because he up against some very powerful forces. We all know that when he is in power the premier gets whatever he wants. Good luck Capt. Bryan, you are going to need help, but never give up, the people are with you.

      • Anonymous says:

        Please come out and help on Saturday. We are having a petition drive at the following supermarkets:

        Fosters Republix West Bay

        Kirks Supermarket George Town

        Book Nook

        Hurley's Grand Harbour

        Fosters Countryside

        Call Capt. Bryan to volunteer

    • Anonymous says:

      WE gonna fix Mac good ‘n proppa!

  6. Durrrr says:

    Is anyone else concerned about this self-appointed ‘protector of our reefs’? Mac has already said that environmental impact studies will be done, and that nothing will be done to damage the North Sound, so why is ‘Captain Bryan’ still banging on about this?

    And this line “The reef surrounding Cayman is one of the few remaining unbroken reefs in the region” is complete nonsense. The North Sound reef already has 3 (or 4?) channels in it, and I’m pretty sure that Mac has already stated that the plan is to simply widen and deepen an existing channel.

    The more ‘Captain Bryan’ keeps going on about this before any facts are on the table, the more he comes accross as a publicity seeking ….

    • Warwick Hunt says:

      You couldn’t be more wrong. He has been driven to the (relative) limelight because he is well placed to fight this issue, and because he has the respect of the people. Plus, he feels strongly about Grand Cayman, and doing what is right.

      Just look at how many people have to mobilise to try and stop the single-handed, self-serving vandalism of one individual, Premier Bush. He is not only creating a great waste of public money in his Govt., but also creating a great cost by way of the time and efforts of people trying to oppose his “plans” (not that he actually plans anything – it’s all crackpot schemes”) .

      Mac has already said that environmental studies will be done”. So that’s all right then eh? Only a fool would think they could dredge as much as they state and not seriously damage the North Sound, probably permanently. You needn’t bother with the studies.

    • Cat says:

      The reason why Captain Bryan is "still banging on this" as you say is because, as has been proven with history, if something pops up in McKeeva’s head whether bad or good, he usually goes ahead despite objections from the public,research,facts & findings that its effects would be bad.

      He’s motivated by money and has shown that even if there is a public outcry,if he think its going to bring in money, despite the implications on the environment as I’m sure it will cause, he’s going to go ahead with it.Furthermore I can Guaruntee that if the reviews are bad, he’s going to want to find someway around it and make he project go ahead.He’s never one to take wise advice, and take heed to it. If it hinders him to gain what he wants,he will find his way around it to still make it happen.

      Classic example, the Cohen Loan. He was advised against it, anddeliberately ignored and went against his committee and the tendoring rules,regulations and procedures and went ahead with it any way,even though in the end it recently didn’t work out afterall.

      This is what hurts me as a young 23 year old Caymanian the most. We are relying on someone to lead our country in the right direction(mind you,I’ve never voted for him and never will, XXX and I don’t trust him or his judgement for anything),follow the rules, laws and regulations,have a leader who actually listens to the people and their concerns,not only listen but actually take them seriously,understand that no means no if the people, committee’s included are against it and if he/she still believes it is a good choice, still have the decency and courtesy to actually explain why they believe it to be good, and get on the same level with the people. XXXX

       He enjoys bullying,insulting your intelligence,mudslinging,namecalling,verbally abusing you and practically curse you out if object to him,"being inappropriate and calling women "sweetheart" instead of maam,if you are against him,he will even go as low as trying to find something from your past or even make an accusation to bash you with to try to shut you up,when his or your personal life was never brought up or part of the conversation in the first place.

      I was watching and listening to Cayman27’s talk to the experts show one night when Captain Bryan called in and Mckeeva sat there and blatanly and disgracefully tried to make an accusation against him to try to shut him up on the show.

      AS far as knew politics isn’t suppose to hurt the people, but as a young person who has grown up in family who pushed me into the world of politics, understanding what it suppose to be, this has been the most painfull few years of my life having him as leader. He has no true leadership skills, XXX.He his a disgrace and embarrasment to us,our country and a true misrepresentation of the Caymanian people.

    • Son of Thunder says:

      ……and you believe anything Mckkeva has to say? Really?

  7. M McLaughlin says:

    Excellent. Very well done Capt. Bryan – I fully applaud and support your efforts

  8. anonymous says:

    Capt. Bryan cares more for these Islands than McKeeva Bush does.XXXX

  9. Anonymous says:

    Although many of us are not hydrodynamic engineers, we all know that efforts to prevent Coral Bleaching are critical to sustaining dive tourism for this or any future government.  

    Coral bleaching (coral colony death) is attributed to rapid water temperature changes and is exacerbated by pollution, coastal run off, silt and sand.  Silt and sand smother the reef and the suspension of particulate blockssunlight and raises the water temperature, killing the coral and organisms they feed upon.  

    Anyone who dives outside the north wall cut at Old Stingray City as the tide is going out can clearly see the haze of pollutants, can feel the thermal change, and can see the bleaching as they swim through the zone.  This dive is totally different from how it was 10-15 years ago.  

    If our leaders do not want to listen to reasonable objection then "Save Cayman" would be wise to solicit international support from the Global Diving community with letters to the editor to major dive mags, NatGeo, and so on. This issue should move to the global stage if that’s what is needed to prevent damage to Cayman’s unique bounty.

     

    • Anonymous says:

      Sounds like a plan if we can get enough divers to come here and spend money to feed us….otherwise….we need some serious “mun in the sun to have some fun”

  10. Anonymous says:

    I hope he will also contact the Nature Conservancy – they do good work.

  11. Anonymous says:

    Captain Bryan for Premier!

    • Anonymous says:

       Could be Ezzard or Capt Bryan……..

      • Anne F Shaw-Pearson says:

        If that happened would the last lawyer, accountant or banker please turn the lights out before they leave.