Letter: Ban coral-harming sunscreens

We visited Grand Cayman this spring for a business conference, and were dismayed by the die-off in the corals around Cayman since the last time we were there, three years ago. Almost all of the corals off Seven Mile Beach and Stingray City were bleached, and the fish population was noticeably diminished.

We packed light and bought sunscreen on the island, and spent the better part of our first day looking for reef-safe mineral-based sunscreen. We finally located a toddler brand in the supermarket amidst the dozens of chemical sunscreens that kill corals. We were amazed that on an island where coral reefs are a major component of tourism, there was not more awareness of the danger of chemical sunscreens on ocean life.

Hawaii just passed a bill banning chemical sunscreens from their islands. Grand Cayman needs to follow suit. Please use your influence on the island to get chemical sunscreens banned–for economic, as well as ecologic, reasons! Cayman must do everything it can to try to save its corals!

Ellen Draper
Boston, US


  1. Regarding sunblocks, I have seen , many places, with ‘coral bleaching’ from about 18 years, seemingly ,all in areas connected with swimming, folks said I was crazy, anohow there is finally proof, accordingly one of my dive magazines, also mentioned this, as of now the ONLY safe sunblocks , are not what people want to hear, nor are they easy to apply, they are ZINK OXIDE, and TITANIUM DIOXIDE, Thanks

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