Future of Latest Proposed Marina in Serious Doubt

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Well folks, it seems like the latest proposed marina over in Coral Bay probably won’t happen either.

We received an email from David Silverman, of Save Coral Bay fame, informing us that the US Environmental Protection Agency has rejected the Moravian Conference’s plan to build a marina in Coral Bay. This plan is the second proposal for a marina out in Coral Bay, the one that we wrote about earlier this month. (Click here to read that story.)

Here’s what David had to say about EPA’s opinion which was sent to the US Army Corps of Engineers:

The key comment in the EPA letter was their statement that the project would have “substantial and unacceptable impact on aquatic resources of national importance” and then their statement that “EPA therefore recommends the denial of a Department of the Army permit for this project.”  They then cite parts 3(a) and 3(b) of the Section 404(q) Memorandum of Agreement between the Army Corps and the EPA.  This all translates to the EPA saying because the project will have substantial impacts on an Aquatic Resource of National Importance (ARNI) the EPA has the authority to veto any action the Army Corps takes which is inconsistent with their recommendation (to deny the permit).  Basically the EPA holds the trump card. 

Pretty good news if you ask us.

For those of you interested in reading the letter it its entirety, you can click here to do so.

15 thoughts on “Future of Latest Proposed Marina in Serious Doubt”

  1. Fantastic! kudo’s to all the people who support the beautiful Coral Bay and thank you David Silverman for your dedication to the cause.

  2. Why not offer the Nature Conservancy the land for a price? The church would get some needed money and no damage would be done.

  3. The live aboard boaters who discharge all their raw sewage directly into Coral Bay must be thrilled they’ll never have to go through the trouble of using a pump out station.

    I know it’s a tempting indulgence to turn this talk into an after school TV special complete with a David versus Goliath subtext; but for once can we pretend to care about the real damage occurring NOW instead of the impacts of projects that MAY happen years (and years) down the road?


    • Work is being done to clean up damage done to the harbor in the past. Much work has been done in the past few years to reverse the damage done by improperly built roads that flow mud and pollutants into the harbor. In the past couple weeks 12 wrecks were removed from the harbor thanks to CBCC and a grant from the feds. Research is being done on getting a pump out boat for sewage. Regular clean ups are sponsored by CBCC and the Coral Bay Yacht Club. There is much proactive work being done to preserve and improve Coral Bay. The work being done by CBCC and other volunteers is not visible until it actually occurs. It took a couple years to get the funding, permits, and contract in place for the recent derelict boat removal project.

  4. Once this destructive project is behind us the community will decide what Coral Bay needs. This may include pump out facilities and floating day docks. Just recently the CBCC had abandoned boats removed.
    Whatever we do will be in the best interest of our community and not greedy developers. Coral Bay will be protected and will continue to thrive with its abundance of beautiful life.

  5. Parker, what you say is true to some degree. Although the current problems need to be addressed, the future, long range issues must also be addressed. These projects were going to happens (as opposed to “MAY happen years… down the road.”) Since we are all working to protect Coral Bay specifically and the VI in general, it is condescending and patronizing to refer to everyone’s efforts as an indulgence.

    As far as current problems, the EPA attempts to address that in the letter that started this particular conversation. In that letter the regional administrator said, “As EPA has previously stated for other projects proposed in this area, whatever the outcome of this
    proposed permit, EPA would like to work with the government of the U.S. Virgin Islands, other federal
    agencies and the interested public, on a strategy to remove all sunken, derelict vessels in Coral Bay and
    to improve waste management practices in this area. That work should continue, regardless of the
    outcome of the marina proposals.”

  6. I like the sound of that Susan. Logic dictates floating docks and the introduction of proper marine (and landward for that matter) waste facilities are long overdue. However the only appropriately located sites for those improvements in Coral Bay are privately owned, aren’t they?

    Having claimed victory against two marina attempts, when are the community leaders going to bring forth practical measures to secure these long overdue improvements? I personally don’t see it happening, but I would love to be proved wrong.

  7. Land ownership is not as clear as it may seem. There is filled land which is not privately owned. There are private land owners who would be willing to work with the community. We are looking forward to the opportunity to stop fighting projects and start promoting the right solutions that meet the needs of Coral Bay.

  8. First, do NOT doubt the power of the worldwide Moravian Council. Second, the “Parker” commenting isn’t the one some of you are thinking of, our old friend. It has been shown from R.I. to California, repeatedly, by Environmental agencies and others, that the boaters’ discharge is negligble compared to runoff cased by poorly installed landside septic systems and erosion runoff. Yes, overboard discharge is bad. No, it’s not the giant problem some would make it out to be. The V.I. has no specific soil type standards for septic systems. No “soil test” or “perk test.” You got land, for the most part, you can build on it. Coral Bay needs pumpout, no doubt. Coral Bay needs to be more boater-friendly for transient boats visiting. But there is a cadre of ghouls on STJ that see the next BIG development, and intend to line their pockets whether you like it or not. With the power of the Moravians, they just might get it.

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