Disney Cruise Line is working on a second tropical destination in The Bahamas, which will be located on the beautiful island of Eleuthera at a place called Lighthouse point. Disney completed the purchase of the privately-owned Lighthouse Point last year and signed an agreement with the Government of The Bahamas.
The plan is to develop less than 20 percent of the property; employ sustainable building practices, including an open-trestle pier that eliminates the need to dredge a ship channel; establish environmental monitoring programs during construction and operation; and donate more than 190 acres of privately owned land to Government, among other commitments.
Despite all of that, a petition has been started on change.org to stop Disney from building on Lighthouse Point.
The petition states:
“There are plenty of places in the Bahamas where Disney can dock its cruise ships. There is only one Lighthouse Point.
We are deeply concerned about Disney’s plans that threaten this unique natural place treasured by generations of Bahamians and visitors from around the world. The seas surrounding the point are so biologically rich that they have been formally proposed as a Marine Protected Area.
This is NOT the place where an environmentally responsible corporation would choose to construct a massive private cruise ship port – the centerpiece of which is a half-mile-long pier cutting across coral reefs including endangered staghorn coral. The port’s construction and operation would seriously harm the environment, while the economic benefits to communities in South Eleuthera are still unclear and very questionable.
Our planet’s oceans are already facing unprecedented pressures. Their future depends on the choices we make today to protect places like the proposed Lighthouse Point Marine Protected Area. Disney should follow the lead of other cruise companies that have chosen instead to rehabilitate already degraded areas for their cruise facilities.
This is our last chance to protect Lighthouse Point for generations to come. Sign the petition to call upon Disney to secure a different, more suitable site for their cruise ship port and instead work with Bahamian citizen groups on a sustainable development alternative for Lighthouse Point.”
There are over 300,000 signatures on the petition. We’re not sure if the petition will make a difference though. Disney has already purchased the land and started the process of preparing to build.
The Disney Cruise Line Blog is reporting that Lighthouse Point Project’s environmental impact assessment (EIA) is close to becoming a finalized document. The Director of the Department of Environmental Planning and Protection says the EIA is expected to be released for public review “in a matter of weeks”.
If you’d like to sign the petition, you can do so here.
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