Video Shows Coral Reef Being Destroyed In Seconds By Cruise Ship’s Anchor

An underwater video posted to YouTube Tuesday captures portions of a coral reef being obliterated by a cruise ship’s anchor and chain in mere seconds, a stunning contrast to the estimated centuries it took to grow.

The disturbing five-and-half minute video was reportedly shot along the Grand Cayman Island’s western shore on the same day it was posted.

“As you will see in the video, a massive portion of the reef out front from Don Fosters and Eden Rock was completely destroyed today,” Scott Prodahl, who posted the video, wrote.

Prodahl claims that the Spanish cruise ship Pullmantur Zenith, which is owned by American Royal Caribbean Cruises, had been given permission to anchor despite it being a protected zone — so it did.

Exactly who made this decision is not clear.

Pullmantur Zenith and Royal Caribbean have not immediately responded to requests for comment, but Royal Caribbean’s main Twitter account — responding to a concerned user‘s inquiry — claims that the ship was “directed to a government-designated anchorage spot, not in a protected area.”

According to a map on the islands’ Department of Environment website, the island’s entire west coast is marked as a marine park, meaning that anchoring is prohibited under most circumstances — particularly by boats larger than 60 feet and in non-sandy areas.

The department’s website further stresses that it’s considered an offense “for anyone without a license to cut, carve, injure, mutilate, displace or break any underwater corals, plant growth or formation.”The disturbing five-and-half minute video was reportedly shot along the Grand Cayman Island’s western shore the same day it was posted.

“Many, if not most, corals grow at a rate of less than half-an-inch a year; so if —> Read More

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