Governor calls for balance over environment

| 04/04/2018 | 37 Comments
Cayman News Service

Governor Anwar Choudhury visits the Crystal Caves on his first tour of Grand Cayman

(CNS): The governor has said that it is important to strike a balance in order to protect the Cayman Islands and that it is vital to protect the environment while protecting the country’s prosperity. Anwar Choudhury has stated on a number of occasions since his arrival that he will be prioritising environmental concerns and that he supports alternative energy and the expansion of solar energy. He said that an energy revolution is happening as technology develops and he believes that the conflict between economics and environment is getting easier to resolve.

Speaking to the press last week, he said he had not yet had chance to discuss the cruise berthing project with government but that he was looking forward to the conversation. Although Premier Alden McLaughlin has referred to the National Conservation Law as “ridiculous”, Choudhury said he had not got the impression from the premier that he wanted to water down the legislation. However, in light of the public concern about the port project, he said he intended to look very closely at the costs and value for money as well as questions surrounding the procurement process.

The governor said he believed in protecting the environment and economic progress, and getting the balance right was crucial but not always easy. Clearly impressed by the beauty of the Cayman Islands since his arrival, he said infrastructure development was important but required consultation, thinking and sensitivity.

“I will be coming at it from both sides of the argument: how can we protect what we have and protect our economic future,” he said. “It is vital that we protect our environment and secure our prosperity.”

While he fell short of stating that he could become a champion for the environment in the absence of government or opposition support for the conservation law, he said he did not get the sense that government wanted to overhaul the law.

However, Choudhury said that the people could rest assured that environmental issues were important to him. He said that he was a huge supporter of renewable energy and described himself as banging on about it since he was a teenager, and that as costs have fallen it has become a viable alternative.

He spoke about the greening of economies but warned that if business continuity is threatened, it is hard to make the changes, regardless of the technology and solutions to get to a better sustainable world.

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Category: Science & Nature

Comments (37)

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  1. satirony says:

    I’s time our shared environment was given a voice: it’s all we’ve got. What has taken millions of years to evolve could be destroyed in one generation. We can and must do better.

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  2. Anonymous says:

    I like him!

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    • Anonymous says:

      Its a front…the dock is still going on and developers from overseas still live the dream in cayman…just look at west bay road today…shambles!!

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    • West Bay Premier says:

      Anonymous 9:11 am , I agree that the Governor seems to be a caring and likable Gentleman . He is the first Governor of the Cayman Islands that I have seen go into the environment and society as he has . I hope that is a sign that he intends to go in the swamp and fight the alligators and snakes too .

      I wish Mr Choudhury all the success and that he brings the Islands back to sanity . I think it’s a shame to see what has happened to the CI .

      Why I am saying the above is because, I read this morning that Ambulance services of a private Company has been suspended without a comment from the Authority to why they have suspended their services , while they do 2 years investigation .
      So now the people are going to be the suffers due to one less Ambulance being in service for a long time .

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  3. Anonymous says:

    Sounds like just as the rest of us he wants to see the beauty of Cayman remain but there always has to be some progress. The dock is sorely needed for our islands economy unless we want to be 100% owned by DART. He owns pretty much all the hotels now and hardly any Caymanians work for them.

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    • Anonymous says:

      By the sound of it Dart will also own the dock!! Guess we will be 1000% Dart owned then instead of 100%.

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    • Anonymous says:

      Wait till you hear that Dart is bidding on the port

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    • Anonymous says:

      Who you think is going to develop the port? I’ll give you a hint… starts with d and ends with art.

      We don’t want or need a cruiseship dock. Build a mega yacht marina instead.

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    • Anonymous says:

      A lot of caymanians work for dart.

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    • Anonymous says:

      Bull crap! Caymanians believe a job in the tourism industry is beneath them, therefore many don’t even apply for the advertised jobs.

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      • Anonymous says:

        Caymanians are treated like shit in the hospitality industry.

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        • Anonymous says:

          No they aren’t if they show up with a good attitude, on time, and everyday they aren’t really sick or on holiday!

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        • Anonymous says:

          Majority of us are treated like shit at work anywhere in the world. That’s why it’s called work and we all hate Mondays. I think if you surveyed the workforce of the world the majority wish they could afford to quit, but that doesn’t pay the bills or feed the kids so we put up, suck up and shut up trying the best we can to build a better future for our families.

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    • Anonymous says:

      So a port supported by a very small minority of wealthy people who want the state to build a cruise dock to make them even more wealthy ( and no one else)is a counter foil to those who see that a Caymanian using his own money to build some world class developments is a problem? Right, sure. Oh, fact check…Dart is the largest employer of Caymanians after the CS. The pro port nuts getting more Trump/Putin like every day..

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      • Randy S. says:

        9 07….who gives a rats ass if the wealthy get more money. Maybe they will give you a low I Q person a job!!!

    • Jotnar says:

      Unlike all those Caymanians working for the non Dart owned hotels, right?

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  4. Anonymous says:

    Gov’na looks like Indiana Jones in that pic!

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  5. Anonymous says:

    It’s interesting that people are looking to the Governor to say what will happen here. I support him giving some air publicly to certain issues, especially the environment, but people need to remember that the Governor’s powers are strictly limited under the Constitution to defence, external affairs, internal security, and the public service. The reserved power to enact legislation without the LA is limited to legislation that is necessary or desirable in connection with those areas (such as when police funding was forced through under the PPM administration). There is a further power allowing the UK to make laws for peace, order and good government. But that’s pretty much it. The courts enforce rights, the LA makes the laws and the executive makes the decisions. The Premier is the official head of government of this territory, head of its executive branch and leader of its legislative branch. A lot of the topical issues people are practically begging the Governor to address, he cannot directly do anything about. He has a constitutional responsibility and right to advise, encourage and warn (like the Queen), and to help him do that and stay in the loop, he chairs Cabinet and may add items to the agenda and call Cabinet at his discretion. But this government comes to Cabinet with decisions already made. So the most effective thing he probably can do is speak publicly and develop trust and rapport and respect with political and civic leaders and the community, which he’s doing. I just don’t want people getting their hopes up that he can direct or deliver change to them. The UK takes its territories’ autonomy seriously.

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    • Anonymous says:

      I agree with you. He has set out with a good example and so far as I am concerned in the few days he has been here he has already mingled with the entire community more than several of his predecessors did throughout their respective entire terms here. He seems to be a people’s man with a balanced mindset. I hope he continues in this way. He might not be able to bring about much needed change himself, but it seems to me that his input could be quite persuasive to those who can bring about change.

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      • Anonymous says:

        If he is respected then he will be able to shift opinion and he’s doing exactly what he needs to in order to do that.

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    • Anonymous says:

      The development of our country is being done by the Central Planning Authority not Government Ministers!! All development should be the outcome of a National Development Plan.

  6. Anonymous says:

    If the financial industry collapses and we have destroyed our natural environment please tell me what the Cayman Islands has left to offer?

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  7. Anonymous says:

    “I will be coming at it from both sides of the argument: how can we protect what we have and protect our economic future,” he said.

    Pretty simple. Don’t build the dock.

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  8. Anonymous says:

    Banging on about it, eh? Let’s see him create concessions to those of us who actually use it. We do not want empty platitudes, we want action and with action, we want benefits for non-commercial entities such as Joe Blow average homeowner.

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    • Anonymous says:

      Speak to your MLA then. That’s what they are supposed to do. Make them actually work for their absurdly high salaries.

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  9. Anonymous says:

    Great photo.

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  10. Anonymous says:

    YES YES YES! We need to stop relying on importing expensive, dirty fossil fuels from other countries to sustain ourselves. What happens when the non-renewable fuel runs out and the ships stop bringing it? Enough sunlight hits this country each day to power it 10x over, we just need to start taking the (big) steps towards being able to harvest the free, clean energy for ourselves.

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    • You are absolutely correct 12:14, but I regret to say that it will never happen here. The reason is that Moses, Alden, McKeeva, Joey and most members of the legislature, as well as the GT merchant class get a good return of 10% from their CUC shares every year. They have absolutely no reason to hinder those excellent financial returns. Sad but true.

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  11. GT Voter says:

    Good luck in stopping the misguided Moses, Alden, McKeeva, Joey and the GT merchant class. None have not connected the role of Cayman’s environment to the its economic and tourism success over the years. The dock is not a priority and does not represent value for money in it’s current format. Look at the cost and returns vs the current record number of cruise passenger arrivals as the key metric to determine the priority. A new EIA must be conducted to assess potential damage to the marine environment and impact to the seven mile beaches and crystal clear waters.

    If the Guvnor does nothing else besides deal with crime and protect the environment from politicians and the developer class he will be a success.

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    • Anonymous says:

      He is already being a success. He is trying to meet as many locals as he can. Breath of fresh air!

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      • Anonymous says:

        It feels like he’s done more in one week than former Governor Helen Kilpatrick did in four years.

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        • Anonymous says:

          Arrr…he has said a few words. Some very well chosen words displaying a grasp of issues and an intelligent assessment of some of the challenges. With some people their words are enough to get things changed…with others, they are just words.

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