Thursday, October 27, 2005

The palm irks environmentalists

Environmentalists are concerned about Nakheel's Palm projects and the damaging effects the artificial islands will have on the ecosystem.

The only known coral reef off the shores of Dubai was destroyed during the dredging work, turtle nesting sites have been destroyed, natural currents rerouted and silt has muddied what were crystal-clear waters, they say.

"It has been detrimental for the natural environment of the Dubai coast, especially at the place and location of the first Palm island," said Frederic Launay, director of the World Wildlife Fund's office in the United Arab Emirates.

"That is a little bit of a shame because there were very good habitats there. There were possibilities of recovery and protection, and there were possibilities of using that natural asset to make something," he told Reuters.

A far cry from the early days of the property boom back in 2003 when Nakheel's men-in-white enthused lovingly of the Palm islands being an oasis for marine life and attracting more to the area to thrive. Was this not the same company that foolishly constructed several hundred villas on rolling hills near Jebel Ali and scratched their heads in surprise when they started falling down?

It makes you question why this self-proclaimed 'City of Gold' needs to constructed man-made islands out in the sea. The only reason I can logically think of is they are being built to compensate for the soulless, characterless wasteland that is the city, and its multifaceted, superficial inhabitants who continue to swim in a sea of self-importance.
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