[Coral-List] Majuro situation

Gregor Hodgson gregorh at reefcheck.org
Sat Mar 22 15:17:22 EDT 2014

There are numerous examples throughout the world of stopping development
projects in foreign countries if sufficient noise is raised either locally
or internationally. A recent one is the Spanish plan to develop a major
resort near Cabo Pulmo in Baja California. If US funding is involved, it is
usually easier to shine light on the situation and stop it if indeed proper
procedures have not been followed. Sometimes, just delaying the project is
enough to kill it. NRDC is an organization that specializes in court cases
designed to stop environmental disasters. What helps is a campaign ‹ either
locally or internationally or both. Before this happens, it is important to
review what actually happened. The FAA administrator refers to documents
that should be reviewed to determine what environmental work has been done.
The first step would be to ask him to make these documents available to
NOAA, Army Corps and US Dept of State for review. There are now many
threatened and endangered species on coral reefs. If US funds are being used
to damage endangered species outside of US waters whose larvae could be
important for the survival of the species in the US, such actions are
probably illegal and in any case should be reviewed by US CRTF, NOAA, US
Dept of State and congressmen interested in this region. There are many US
government procedures that could be used to slow or halt this work
immediately. If indeed procedures have not been followed, or damage is
avoidable, NRDC could also sue companies involved to stop the development.

I don't know anything about this other than what was reported here. But it
is important to keep in mind that as much as we like corals, we can't stop
all development and even with a thorough impact assessment,  if  It comes to
a trade off between e.g. making a safer airport  vs killing some corals, the
corals are usually going to lose. The goal becomes minimizing/mitigating

Gregor Hodgson, PhD
Executive Director
Reef Check Foundation
PO Box 1057 (mail)
17575 Pacific Coast Highway (overnight)
Pacific Palisades, CA 90272 USA
T: +1 310-230-2371 or 2360
Gregorh at reefcheck.org
Skype: gregorh001

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