[Coral-List] The Saga of Dean Jacobson and Majuro Coral Mining (Jim Hendee)

mtupper mtupper at coastal-resources.org
Tue Mar 18 13:14:10 EDT 2014

Jim, would it be worthwhile sending all the Coral-List discussions about Dean's
saga along with a petition to some decision-makers who might have the clout to

Just a thought...


Dr. Mark Tupper
Coastal Resources Association
2503-13618 100 Ave., Surrey, BC, Canada V3T 0A8
Email: mtupper at coastal-resources.org
Tel. +1-778-903-6420

> On March 17, 2014 at 2:25 PM "Delbeek, Charles" <CDelbeek at calacademy.org>
> wrote:
> What I find somewhat disturbing is that this not new, Dean has been actively
> petitioning this list for help in raising awareness at all levels of
> government for this issue, yet it seems as if some are treating this as new.
> It is not ... Dean has been waging this battle for several years, with little
> help from those in a position to actually help.
> J. Charles Delbeek, M.Sc.
> -----Original Message-----
> From: coral-list-bounces at coral.aoml.noaa.gov
> [mailto:coral-list-bounces at coral.aoml.noaa.gov] On Behalf Of Carly Kenkel
> Sent: Friday, March 14, 2014 11:27 AM
> To: coral list
> Subject: Re: [Coral-List] The Saga of Dean Jacobson and Majuro Coral Mining
> (Jim Hendee)
> Dear Coral-Listers,
> I feel compelled to write in support of Dean Jacobson and his attempts to
> raise awareness concerning the impending doom of reefs in Majuro. I had the
> pleasure of meeting Dean in 2010 when I spent a few weeks in the US
> Marshall Islands sampling corals as part of NOAA funded project aimed at
> evaluating genetic connectivity of Acroporids across Micronesia. Dean was
> kind enough to introduce me to the local reefs and share some of his work
> documenting reef diversity in the region.
> The fragile status of reefs in and around Majuro are a conservation
> biologist's worst nightmare. Majuro and Arno contain some of the most
> striking atolls I have ever seen. The structure of these reefs is
> breathtaking and though far from pristine, there are coral species on these
> island that I have never seen anywhere else, such as the super-rare
> "elkhorn" coral that made headlines a few years ago (
> http://www.nbcnews.com/id/38566957/ns/technology_and_science-science/t/worlds-rarest-coral-found-remote-pacific-atoll/#.UyMs8V5siA0).
> However, these islands are also some of the most impoverished in
> Micronesia, combining the worst attributes of a US-funded welfare state
> with a social structure that places all the wealth and power in the hands
> of a corrupt minority.
> While I'm sure the Marshallese care about their home, reef conservation
> will always take a backseat to feeding their families. There are
> individuals and organizations involved in conservation efforts in Majuro.
> However, I witnessed as members of a conservation organization on Majuro
> turned a blind eye to a massive female turtle when she rolled onto the dock
> in Arno, filling the bed of a truck, belly up. She was caught while digging
> a nest on the beach and destined to be the prime delicacy at a birthday
> cook-out back on Majuro.
> Given Dean's experience and my own observations, I do not think local
> efforts to prevent dredging are capable of success. However, the Marshall
> Islands are a US protectorate, and clearly the FAA and EPA have some
> control over this project. I know people who read this listserv have
> connections to policy makers in the US. As Dr. Hendee pointed out, more
> can be done. If you are able, please take the time to make inquiries about
> the runway extension project at Majuro. I believe our combined efforts can
> make an impact.
> Best,
> Carly
> --
> Carly Kenkel
> PhD Candidate
> Dept of Integrative Biology
> The Univ of Texas at Austin
> carly.kenkel at gmail.com
> office: 512-475-6424
> cell: 623-910-2394
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