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Old 02-12-2016, 11:02 PM   #1
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Microsoft’s Paul Allen’s yacht wrecks coral reef

Microsoft's Paul Allen's yacht wrecks coral reef in the Caribbean - YBW

I just came across this article and from the headline assumed that the ship had run aground. Turns out that all that damage (14,000 sq ft of it) was caused by the anchor chain scraping along the reef.

Rather sad when our actions for "harmless enjoyment" turn out to be so destructive. But it's certainly not just coral reefs that are damaged, but any cold or warm water ecosystem where sea life clings to the hard stuff.
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Old 02-13-2016, 08:00 AM   #2
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For a very balance well thought out view:

https://www.caymancompass.com/2016/0...-for-everyone/
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Old 02-13-2016, 08:37 AM   #3
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When I installed an advanced fish finder with downscan sonar on my boat I was again reminded of what a horrible fisherman I am

The fish finder wasn't a good use of my money, but I find that sonar incredible helpful at seeking out flat patches of sand amongst the rocks and corals. A safe place to drop the anchor.

I suppose it doesn't hurt for each of us to do our own part, no matter how little.
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Old 02-13-2016, 09:48 AM   #4
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Which one? he has 4-5 of the top / most expensive private vessels on the planet.

From what I heard, he dropped anchor where they told him to, so who's fault is that?

It's a research boat. Perhaps they are researching what anchor lines do to protected habitats?
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Old 02-13-2016, 10:18 AM   #5
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According to Bill's article, there have been multiple occasions of reef damage due to the local authorities dictating where to drop anchor. Perhaps that is why no fines have been levied so far?

Still, even if instructed to anchor somewhere, if it endangers your vessel or if there is obvious coral underneath as shown on sonar, then the Captain should be questioning those orders.

Tough judgement call either way for Mr. Allen's captain.
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Old 02-13-2016, 10:40 AM   #6
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In a place that openly says they will fine you for reef damage and then tells you where to anchor...in you are in a foreign country...


While using personal judgment is admirable...I think most would anchor as directed.
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Old 02-13-2016, 10:55 AM   #7
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While using personal judgment is admirable...I think most would anchor as directed.
Perhaps you're right, but if your equipment or judgement is telling you there might be an issue, then a polite call on the VHF isn't going to get you fined.

However, listening to some banana-republic harbormaster who makes $1 an hour could get you thousands in fines. The visitor will always be wrong, not the local.
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Old 02-13-2016, 11:25 AM   #8
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For a very balance well thought out view:
I was in agreement with the "balance" until I hit the last couple of paragraphs where they mentioned the billionaire boys club and the economy.

Sounds like arse kissin' to me.
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Old 02-13-2016, 11:46 AM   #9
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No reason anyone should be jealous of a billionaire's big yacht, or anyone's. Think of the money that pours into the economy and feeds families during construction, maintenance and cruising.
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Old 02-13-2016, 12:01 PM   #10
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Think of the money that pours into the economy and feeds families during construction, maintenance and cruising.
Yup.
The basis of my comment. Don't scare that away.
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Old 02-13-2016, 01:21 PM   #11
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I'm sure Paul Allen feels terrible about this tragedy. Most people in his position are environmentally conscious and will do the right thing.
If I were in a foreign country and was told where to drop anchor, I would comply as most would.
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Old 03-05-2016, 12:00 PM   #12
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This is even worse. Sickening. And the Dept of Environment are the ones making it worse!
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Old 03-05-2016, 12:39 PM   #13
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This is even worse. Sickening. And the Dept of Environment are the ones making it worse!
Well at least it's a relatively dead reef to start with.

It's amazing how dead so much reef is these days.
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Old 03-06-2016, 10:33 AM   #14
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Perhaps it's a relatively dead reef because of the ships and the dept of environment. That chain is like a bulldozer scraping across those rocks and coral. The same thing happens in Alaska or Maine or anywhere.

That's one of two reasons why I prefer anchoring with rope, and sometimes floating (poly) line in certain areas.
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Old 03-06-2016, 11:03 AM   #15
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Perhaps it's a relatively dead reef because of the ships and the dept of environment. That chain is like a bulldozer scraping across those rocks and coral. The same thing happens in Alaska or Maine or anywhere.

That's one of two reasons why I prefer anchoring with rope, and sometimes floating (poly) line in certain areas.

Alaska doesn't have dead coral reef's.
And that one is dead, most likely from water temp.

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Old 03-06-2016, 11:08 AM   #16
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Alaska doesn't have dead coral reef's.
And that one is dead, most likely from water temp.
No coral reefs but eelgrass and kelp beds get severely damaged by anchor chains dragging across the bottom.
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Old 03-06-2016, 11:31 AM   #17
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What that shows is that there appears to be some real question regarding where boats should and shouldn't anchor in the harbor there. Allen's boat anchored where told, as did the cruise ship. Now why the boats themselves don't use sonar to try to double check or if they could detect it with sonar, I don't know.

There is also what it doesn't show. That is what the reef looked like before they anchored. All the damage most certainly didn't come from this one time. Did it come from previous anchoring or from other issues. It's a bit like having a very small fender bender with an older car which has dents all over it and the owner gets the repair for all of them in the estimate.

There is obviously some issue with where boats should and shouldn't be anchoring in that area and it seems they really need to figure that out and instruct accordingly as to where the safe anchorage is.
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Old 03-06-2016, 11:39 AM   #18
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There is also the possibility that the reef in question was long dead and THAT is why it was deemed ok to anchor there.

Then some couple with a pair if fins and an underwater camera sees an opportunity for a facebook fame and the world goes nuts with an sensationalist headline like "Microsoft's Paul Allen's yacht wrecks coral."

We do live in a world where very little is what it appears.
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Old 03-06-2016, 11:44 AM   #19
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Actually there are corals that grow in Alaska. Amazing stuff. And there are reefs of stone and limestone, kelp beds, etc. all over the world.

I'd agree that the reef in the video is not the rich, diverse one that we picture in our minds, but it is not dead. I have volunteered with research studies and the bleached reefs (due to water temperature) all had a different appearance. Here in the Persian Gulf the summer water temperature hovers around 92 degrees F. There are very few corals here in the coastal area. Tons of dead coral though, so the temperature must have been a lot cooler decades ago.

In any case, in the video there are fish trying to make a living, soft corals holding on for dear life and sponges trying to do what sponges do all day.

But then again, perhaps that harbor has no large sandy areas at all, so a compromise was needed to balance man's needs versus nature's needs. The strange thing is how the commentary states that no one is allowed to collect from the reef, that it is protected. THAT is some serious hypocrisy!
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Old 03-06-2016, 11:51 AM   #20
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There is also the possibility that the reef in question was long dead and THAT is why it was deemed ok to anchor there.

Then some couple with a pair if fins and an underwater camera sees an opportunity for a facebook fame and the world goes nuts with an sensationalist headline like "Microsoft's Paul Allen's yacht wrecks coral."

We do live in a world where very little is what it appears.
That's why I usually wait for "the rest of the story"....

Also why I wait till long after an accident occurs and read usually not one but several sources of investigation reporting. Being a "Columbo" detective is fun...but not appropriate in a public forum as it is forever and often most of it is incorrect speculation that people misinterpret and carry with them against the participant. And why people wonder why I bother to dispute "wild theories" based on nothing more than a headline. Look at this case...the vessel anchored where told by the authorities...for whatever the reason. Yet is the scapegoat in the thread title and Paul Allen probably wasn't even in the decision where to anchor precisely.

Even here on TF there are reasons people do and like things that other's can't imagine (for several reasons I suppose)...yet their philosophies may not be that far apart in the end. Jumping to conclusions is never a great idea.
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