POF urges people to contact MLAs over NCL

| 30/05/2019 | 6 Comments

Cayman News Service

Photo courtesy of Protect Our Future

(CNS): Local students are not letting up on their growing campaign to force government to do more to protect Cayman’s natural environment. And with many of them concerned about the threat to the National Conservation Law and government’s current review of the legislation to water down some of the provisions, the young members of Protect Our Future (POF) are urging people to contact their MLAs. They want the public to express their support for the legislation and encourage government to enhance, not gut, the law.

Government has convened a panel chaired by the premier to review the legislation, which was passed by the former environment minister, Wayne Panton, in 2013 — an historic moment for Cayman as there had been hard and persistent resistance to any kind of environmental legislation from the development and construction sector.

But since it passed unanimously through the House, the law has faced a continued onslaught of unjustified criticism from the powerful pro-development lobby, which has influenced politicians who once supported the law. This has led to a government decision to review and water down the protections it offers to Cayman’s natural resources.

But the country’s youngest adults are not impressed. Using social media to get their message out, Protect Our Future is urging people to fight back.

“The National Conservation Law is what protects the very things that support our beautiful island. The government should be strengthening this law not weakening it so that corporations can continue to overdevelop this island,” the teenagers said in a post on their Facebook page. “If this law becomes weaker, so does the protection for our mangroves, seagrass and reefs. Contact your local government representative and let your voice be heard.”

Speaking to CNS last week, Richard Weber, one of the leading young campaigners at the forefront of the environmental movement in Cayman, issued a warning to MLAs who support gutting of the conservation law that they will have to face the electorate and answer for their actions.

Practicing what they are preaching, Jack Paolini, Olivia Zimmer and Richard Weber, members of Protect Our Future and students at CIS, met with Capt Eugene Ebanks,  councillor for the environment, and Deputy Chief Officer Nancy Barnard at the Legislative Assembly last week to discuss what government is doing to address environmental issues on island. 

Although the students said the meeting was effective and informative, “there are still many steps that still need to be taken”. They added, “We hope we can continue to work closely with the government to make change for our future.”

Check out the latest episode of ‘Listen UP with CNS’ for more about government’s plans to weaken the conservation law here

The National Conservation Law is what protects the very things that support our beautiful island. The government should…

Posted by Protect Our Future on Thursday, 30 May 2019

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Category: Land Habitat, Marine Environment, Science & Nature

Comments (6)

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  1. Ron Ebanks says:

    God bless the Kids and put them to run Cayman Island and put the politicians back in School .

    • Jay Oswell says:

      That is a pretty stupid statement although meant well. You may believe that but it is certainly not possible.

  2. Anonymous says:

    May God Bless these students and help them to accomplish their passions and goals!

  3. Anonymous says:

    It’s good to see the young generation fighting to protect their future. Dont let these greedy politicians destroy your home. Stand up and fight.

  4. Anonymous says:

    It’s estimated that by 2050, our oceans will contain more plastic than fish!

    Adults failed to take actions to protect environment. Young activists all over the world are stepping up.

    BOYAN SLAT, Netherlands, 24, is my absolute hero. When he was just 16 years old he originally developed an idea for a passive technology called the Ocean Cleanup Array to capture and remove much of the surface plastic in the North Atlantic Gyre.

    Cayman youth should monitor the progress of the first ever attempt to clean the ocean from plastic. In the near future Cayman would have to do something about plastic drifted to cayman shores from the seas and oceans. Becoming a part of theoceancleaup team, as volunteers, would be a great experience for cayman youth.

    Link to the jobs opening:

    Theoceancleanup face book https://www.facebook.com/TheOceanCleanup/

    P.S. in anticipation of the arguments that the focus should be on reduction of plastic production, I would point your attention to the fact that it would take centures for mother nature to breakdown existing marine plastic. Estimates tare hat plastic bags can take 20 years to decompose, plastic bottles up to 450 years, and fishing line, 600 years; but in fact, no one really knows how long plastics will remain in the ocean.

  5. Anonymous says:

    What a legacy to leave behind! SHAMEFULl.

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