By RICARDO WELLS
Tribune Staff Reporter
DISNEY Cruise Line said yesterday it has no plans to construct a cruise port at Egg Island, Eleuthera, claiming impact studies have suggested that island’s marine environment could not sustain a development of that magnitude.
In an email responding to questions from The Tribune on Thursday, Disney Cruise Line spokeswoman Kim Prunty confirmed that environmental impact assessments and geo-technical studies carried out by the company have indicated that the quaint island’s marine and environmental profile could not survive a development on that level.
Ms Prunty said: “We regularly look for opportunities for growth, some of which we pursue and others that we don’t. We recently completed a careful and thorough review of a project at Egg Island and determined that the environmental impact of our intended development would be too significant.”
Ms Prunty said as a result, Disney Cruise Lines made the decision to close the door on the idea.
Earlier this month, a petition spearheaded by residents of Eleuthera surfaced, calling for a ban on any development by Disney Cruise Lines.
On Monday, Prime Minister Perry Christie spoke about the matter, calling for caution as he insisted that no development deal with the cruise line had been approved.
He said while he understood the initial shock and panic over the proposal which had been made public to that point, residents in Eleuthera could rest assured that his Cabinet would not sign off on any plan without the relevant assessments being done.
At the time of Mr Christie’s statement, the “Stop Disney from purchasing Egg Island” petition had some 1,337 signatures.
The petition, among other things, highlighted the island’s importance to the livelihood of residents and the ecosystem of the surrounding islands.
Disney Cruise Lines has on several occasions ventured into discussions with the Bahamas government on opportunities to widen its cruise brand.
The company maintains that it has always mandated that studies be carried out to guard against environmental dangers.