Environmental concerns running high

| 20/04/2013

reef.gif(CNS): Concerns are running high about Cayman’s environment and its lack of protection according to a survey recently conducted by the National Trust among its membership. Of the 155 respondents surveyed in March, 99% said they felt it is important to preserve the history and environment of the Cayman Islands, while only a meager 3% of respondents said they felt that Cayman’s environment is adequately protected by current legislation. 97% of respondents said they believe the Cayman Islands needs more legislation to protect its environment, and 86% said they believe the Cayman Islands needs a law to protect places of historic importance.

“This survey confirms a substantial level of concern about the state of environmental and historic protection here in the Cayman Islands,” said National Trust Executive Director, Christina McTaggart.

McTaggart noted that 88% of respondents stated it was “very important” that the next Government enacts legislation protecting the history and environment of the Cayman Islands, and a further 11% felt that it was “important”.

“We believe this information sends a clear message to the next Government that our citizens are concerned about the loss of our natural and built heritage, and we hope it will be the catalyst to ensure the creation of good conservation policy, and legislation beyond what already exists in the Animals Law,” said McTaggart.

She continued, “As the only non-governmental, not for profit organization charged with conserving our history and environment, The National Trust’s work is vital to ensuring the protection of significant historic and environmental sites on all three islands. In fact, the Cayman Islands is only able to meet its obligations related to a number of international treaties thanks to the work of the National Trust. However, our efforts can only extend as far as we are able to raise the funds to purchase and subsequently protect these sites.”

She also added, “We have been urging our lawmakers to release funds to the Trust from the Environmental Protection Fund, which was set up in the 1990s specifically to help protect Cayman’s environment. We hope the next government will take heed. Those funds would go a long way toward supporting our efforts to establish a system of protected areas that will ensure the long-term survival of Cayman’s unique plants, animals and habitats, some of which are not found anywhere else on earth.”

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  1. Anonymous says:

    The results of this survey is being used like a survey of alcoholics on allowing bars to open longer hours, of coarse the results would be yes. Then insinuating the general public would produce the same result.

  2. Anonymou says:

    The politicians who have been in recent governments and wanta be politicians will pay lip service to the environment for those who care about the environment but in reality they continue to pander to the local landowners who are looking to cash in on development dollars and covet their votes.

  3. Anonymous says:

    Lets hope they buy out the central mangrove befrore the price goes up

  4. Anonymous says:

    Humanity is commiting an environmental suicide. Advances in technology without corresponing advances in mentality will exterminate human beings. Cayman Islands are no different, may be just more stupid.  And of course it is all in the name for proficts, insatiable need for bigger, better and more. We are beoynd of point of no return. Calling self-destruction a progress; what can be more idiotic?

  5. Anonymous says:

    The UK needs to take responsibility for the Environmental Laws and the Department of Environment before  it is too late. All parties and politicians have neither the intelligence of the will to tackle this politically sensitive issue in a country where the majority of Caymanians are only worried about their fishing rights being limited in any way. The last four years under the UDP has systematically bankrupted the DOE and oppressed its staff and environmental experts to bury the scientific evidence that is indisputable. We are living in dangerous times.

  6. Anonymous says:

    i hope they open up areas that was closed for +20 years! rather than closing off everything! don't foreget the sea is apart of cayman culture, it should be protected but not taken away from us!



    • Anonymous says:

      Just catch and kill everything–then you will not have to bother with any more comments.

    • Anonymous says:

      How foolish can you be?! Yes its our colture, but if we don't protect it, there won't be any left. Opening up any zone that was closed will only defeat the purpose that it intended years ago!!!

      Stom being so damn greedy!!!! In fact, AS A 6th GENERATION CAYMANIAN, I say close everything off for 15 years. Then, only after great consideration, open up some areas to limited extraction.

      No one on this island will die if we really offered some true protection for the marine environment.

      Of course, I suspect we will never get a Government that had the balls to do what is right.


  7. Anonymous says:

    Also stingray city should be a national heritage sight  and tours being conductedslowly by born and bred Caymanians.  Not paper status Cayman.  Sick and tired of going on a tour where expats are taking holiday makers on a trip and selling secondhand information.  


    • Anonymous says:

      A Caymanian is a Caymanian. Get used to it.

    • Anonymous says:

      Exactly. So many amongst us that have no clue about our history, heritage and environment. They just make stuff up to have something to say.  I have met so many visitors that you have to set straight because they have been fed such poor and ignorant information.  

    • Anonymous says:

      I'm sick and tired too…of seeing bad grammer and spelling mistakes in anti expat diatribes. Learn to spell or shut up.

  8. peter milburn says:

    Hip Hip Hooray Lets hope our new Govt will jump on this as well and do what is right for future genarations.I notice only one or two candidates are including the environment in their meetings and I urge them all to get on the band wagon to support this huge part of our income for these islands.We cannot afford to lose touch with what brings most of our tourism here.

  9. Anonymous says:

    After every rainfall, untreated and toxic leachate is expelled directly into the North Sound from our faulty and aged dump facility.  How can the containment of this ongoing bio and chemical hazard not be a national priority?  We are killing our own corals, sea grasses, and fish stocks through ongoing neglect and bickering.  Whoever gets into power in May needs to carry out a plan to tackle this issue.  We need some action.  Thanks.

    • SKEPTICAL says:

      I can confirm from personal experience that there has been a dramatic change in the water quality in North Sound. In the early 80’s, and for many years, at the back of my house on the southern end of NS, we could see from the sea wall an incredible range of juvenile fish – Sergeant Majors, Sqirrel fish, Grunts, Angel fish, Gars, Barracuda, Blue crabs – shoals of fry of all manner of fish, Eagle rays, baby lobstar. Now, the area is completely devoid of life of any kind. The turtle grass on the bottom is covered in a dirty brown scum.
      When my son helped me lift a fixed mooring some years ago, the stench that bubbled up from the mud on the seabed was nauseating. Whenever there is a strong Norther in the Winter, we have a foot of dirty brown froth on the surface of the water.
      North Sound has unquestionably been badly polluted, and leaching from Moint Trashmore, the increased number of septic tanks, and outflow from sewage treatment plants, must be major contributors to this problem.
      These peripheral areas of NS historically were the nurseries for fish which would eventually migrate to the NS reef. If these nurseries die, so, ultimately does the fish population on the reefs which visiting divers expect to,enjoy.

    • Anonymous says:

      We have a plan for the dump.  Move it to the appropriate proposed location in the Bodden Town district.

    • Anonymous says:

      This is very true and the way to solve is to keep the dump where it is and at the same time clean up the site.

      • Anonymous says:

        That's a great idea and would be very popular, but engineering-wise, how does one insert a modern containment liner with drainage and filtration systems underneath the existing trash towers and above the porous surface rock and marl without first moving that overburden somewhere else – if at least temporarily…and if one goes to that trouble and expense, then it might as well be a permanent relocation.  

      • Anonymous says:

        Problem is that there are no barriers or drainage channels or filtration underneath the ill-conceived piles at Trashmore.  One has to remove the piles and dig up the contaminated marl underneath to begin to remedy the poisonous leachate issue.  It's going to be costly, but so is the cost of doing nothing both in terms of lasting envirnomental degradation (and tourism knock-on effects) and well as the serious health risks to humans and animals alike.  Given a choice between several unaffordable capital projects (ie. new airport, new berthing) we should really be talking about dump remediation and be putting that at the top of the list.  We should be putting our national health above all else.

    • Anonymous says:

      I was wrong. I thought all of the national trust membership were extremist, but I now know 3% of them are reasonable minded people.

      • Anonymous says:

        Are you a member of the National Trust? If not on what basis did you conclude all the members were extremists?