Ten months after his 300 foot mega-yacht Tatoosh destroyed a coral reef with its anchor chain, billionaire Microsoft co-founder Paul Allen is paying up.
Environment Minister Wayne Panton said the country has already received an undisclosed financial settlement for the January incident.
The minister told Cayman 27 the amount is commensurate with the nearly 14,000 square feet of damage inflicted by the Tatoosh, and says the money will be used to install permanent moorings for mega yachts, something our next guest has been banging the drum for… longer than he’d care to admit.
“We’ve got to do this now, right now, tomorrow morning, the next day, whenever it happens to be. We’ve got to nip this in the bud now and not allow this to happen anymore. You come in here, want to anchor? No anchoring, go down there and tie up on one of those moorings and let that be the end of it,” said Dive legend and conservationist Peter Milburn just a few days after the Tatoosh incident.
Mr. Milburn joined Cayman 27’s Pat Krietlow and Joe Avary to discuss the Tatoosh settlement, and the future of coral damage incidents.
“In the past we certainly have had some damage that has occurred, and it wasn’t discovered until quite a ways down the road in time, and that makes it very very difficult then to engage with the partied that may have been involved, which resulted in that damage,” said Minister Panton, addressing the notion that the incident could easily have gone undetected.
“Definitely kudos to those who keep an eye on those things,” he said.