Tuesday, May 08, 2007


A plea

A plea, originally uploaded by Bitterroot.
Taken on Guana Cay, Abacos, Bahamas.

Residents on a small, unspoiled island issue a poignant plea...

Here is some background on this issue as described in several venues:

Overview – from San Francisco Chronicle

Guana Cay, The Bahamas -- The calm, turquoise waters off this sleepy island have long lured visitors seeking shelter from storms, but a San Francisco development company's ambitious plan to build a gated community for well-heeled golfers and yacht owners has set off a full-scale revolt that flies in the face of the government's plans to build mega-resorts on many of the country's most pristine islands.

"They'll come with their poodles with pedicures, and they'll expect us to jump," said Troy Albury, who runs a scuba diving operation on Guana Cay, one of the Out Islands that form a coral-fringed strand about 200 miles east of Florida.

But his real concern is what the development might mean for the lush coral reef offshore. Albury heads the Save Guana Cay Reef Association, which has taken the unprecedented step of suing Bahamian Prime Minister Perry Christie for leasing more than 100 acres of crown land, without the approval of the local government, to help the Discovery Land Company build Baker's Bay Golf and Ocean Club…

See web site here...

From web site of Save Guana Cay Reef Association

Bakers Bay Golf & Ocean Club, formerly known as Baker's Bay Club, also formerly known as Passerine Development, proposed by The Discovery Land Company, is a 585-acre luxury golf course and 240-slip marina (scaled back by Developer to 180-slips) that is completely private for members only…

The 3rd largest barrier reef in the world lies only 50 feet from shore and closer in places. The golf course and associated pollutants will kill the reef - it is inevitable. The marina is set to be dredged in behind Joe's Creek, the island's only and last fish estuary…

"Save Guana Cay Reef" is a group dedicated to protecting this natural wonder and ensuring that there is a long lasting legacy for Abaconians.

See web site here...

From web site of Discovery Land Co.

For those with larger water craft, Baker's Bay's unique deep water channel makes it one of the only places in the Abacos that can accommodate large yachts.

The Ocean Club will feature a fabulous clubhouse with fine and casual dining, beach service, resort-style swimming pool, spa and fitness facilities, tennis courts and beach volleyball courts as well as a variety of water craft, snorkeling, scuba diving and fishing equipment. Additionally, the club will feature a spectacular member-owned golf course designed by Tom Fazio providing a pristine core-golf experience. The golf course will play along the ocean in dramatic style with strategic shots over inlets and long rocky shoreline.

Residential options in the guard-gated community include 359 spectacular custom home sites...

See web site here...

Please support the preservation of pristine places.

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Any chance they'll listen?
Hi Pam - I finished my entry on this post later this afternoon. It is a very complicated situation, but if you go to the web site for the "Save Guana Cay Reef Association," you'll see that this group has made significant headway in opposing this development.

I remain amazed at the similarity of the situations in so many parts of the world when developers start the literal and figurative bulldozers rolling. It requires constant vigilance to keep pristine areas unspoiled.

One reason for the complexity is that these developments provide jobs for locals, so there are many dimensions to these situations. However, the pattern of large corporate entities coming into an area to gate it off, create opulent amenities, and permanently alter the ecosystem is a sinister one. I have seen it over and over in western Montana.
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