I’m not one of those “Al Gore is a big fat hypocrite for talking about global warming because he flies on airplanes” clowns. But I think there may be a teeny problem with the way we’re describing Paul Allen in the first line of this story:
A yacht owned by Microsoft co-founder and marine conservationist Paul Allen has ploughed into a sensitive reef in the Cayman Islands, destroying the majority of coral on the protected ecosystem.
The MV Tatoosh, a 300ft yacht owned by the billionaire Allen, ripped up 14,000 square feet of coral reef in the West Bay replenishment zone, according to local officials. About 80% of the reef, situated in a protected area, was destroyed by the ship’s chain. It is thought that Allen was not on board at the time.
Yeah, I don’t think you can still be a “marine conservationist” after something like this. They should revoke your membership, or at least put you in a timeout, something.
I especially like this bit of PR-speak:
According to a statement from Allen’s investment firm Vulcan, the incident occurred on 14 January. “When [the MV Tatoosh] crew was alerted by a diver that her anchor chain may have impacted coral in the area, the crew promptly, and on their own accord, relocated their position to ensure the reef was protected,” it said, adding that the crew was aiding investigations into the damage.
“Your honor, when my client was alerted by a passerby that the car he was driving may have run over a pedestrian, then backed over the same pedestrian in reverse, and then run over the pedestrian a third time, he promptly, and on his own accord, relocated his position to ensure the pedestrian was protected. I know the word ‘hero’ is overused these days, but if you ask me…”
Oh, and in case you were wondering, not only is Allen a “marine conservationist,” he specifically gives money toward researching coral reefs:
The incident comes just five months after Allen announced support for research to “stabilize and restore coral reefs,” one of several philanthropic projects he has aided through Vulcan.
Well, oops. Maybe he could fund a study on how to strengthen coral reefs so they can survive a collision with a yacht.
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