Clean-up planned after ship dumps sand on Eden Rock coral

The Department of Environment posted this photo of sand left deposited on Eden Rock by a boat. Coral mortality has already been observed, the department said. - Photo: DoE

The Cayman Islands Department of Environment is calling on divers to help save coral at Eden Rock after a ship left large amounts on sand on the reef.

The DoE has made an urgent call to divers to help remove the sand in a clean-up effort organised for Wednesday afternoon, 16 Sept.

“Following a recent tug and ship encounter within George Town Harbour, much of the shore reef by Eden Rock has large amounts of freshly deposited sand covering live coral.

“The sand was too thick, in some instances (up to 4 inches), for the coral to self-clean and there was already evidence of coral mortality,” a Facebook post from the department read on Tuesday night.

A boat and tug ‘encounter’ led to a large amount of sand being deposited on the live coral at Eden Rock. – Photo: DoE

“DoE divers made an assessment of the area on Tuesday and determined that we need community assistance to help waft the sediment and uncover the coral.”

Experienced divers are being asked to gather at Eden Rock between 2pm and 4pm Wednesday to help remove the sand. Free dive tanks will be provided by the Eden Rock Dive Centre.

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