Missive to Morgan Stanley

September 8, 2018

 

Following Morgan Stanley's recent announcement to the press that they are drafting new plans for the Enderby Wharf development, we wrote to Morgan Stanley this week asking them to take on board the community's hopes for a clean cruise port at the site. 

 

For too long residents in Greenwich and the Isle of Dogs have been living with the threat of this potentially polluting development hanging over them. Its time we had some answers from Morgan Stanley on what they plan to do.

 

In our letter we remind Morgan Stanley of the scale of pollution produced by cruise ships and the health impacts from poor air quality which is now reaching a crisis level in London and breaching legal limits. We also remind them of their own environmental commitments as well as their corporate values to "do the right thing" and  "to give back to communities". Its time for Morgan Stanley to start being a good neighbour.

 

We would dearly like to see a new chapter in the saga of the cruise terminal at Enderby Wharf and for all parties to come together to find an amicable solution that does not add to local peoples' anxieties over their health and the environment. On that basis we have approached Morgan Stanley to ask them if they will receive us and our petition.

 

We are asking our supporters to lend their voice to our request and to follow up our letter with their own.

 

And for those of you who haven't signed the petition yet, here's the link

 

Letter to Morgan Stanley 

 

Clare Woodman                                                                              

Chief Operating Officer

Morgan Stanley

25 Cabot Square, London E14 4QA

 

6th September 2018

 

Dear Ms Woodman

 

We write to you on behalf of resident groups in both Greenwich and Tower Hamlets with regard to Morgan Stanley’s Enderby Wharf development.  We are much encouraged to learn that Morgan Stanley has decided to draft new plans and would like to convey our hopes that these plans present a sustainable development incorporating a zero emissions cruise ship terminal at the site.

 

London faces a growing public health problem due to the air pollution crisis.  In their current form, Morgan Stanley’s proposals for a cruise terminal serve only to make London’s air quality worse by allowing cruise ships to generate high levels of pollution from their large diesel engines.  The threat of having to breathe in harmful emissions has been hanging over us for a long time now and is a major source of consternation for all of us and our families.  

 

Cruise liners burn heavy fuel oil which has one hundred times more sulphur content than road fuel. A cruise ship typically burns up to 700 litres of fuel an hour running its engines in port and produces the equivalent in diesel fumes as 688 lorries running their engines. With up to 55 cruise visits planned annually with an average stay of 3 days, we face ships releasing sulphur dioxide, nitrogen dioxide and particulate matter into our homes, offices and schools every day of the summer.

 

The dangers of diesel and nitrogen dioxide fumes are now well documented causing heart disease, strokes, lung impairment, cancer and impairing cognitive development. Already 10,000 Londoners die prematurely each year as a result of air pollution. There is surely no place in our capital for a polluting venture like Enderby Wharf located next to thousands of new homes and across the river from your own offices and employees in Canary Wharf. We strongly question the morality of marketing and building apartments next to a cruise ship terminal which does not have mitigating measures in force such as onshore power.

 

We understand Enderby Wharf resides in one of your property portfolios.  Morgan Stanley is also the owner of the land and its accompanying planning permission to build the terminal.  The current plans, however, completely contradict your environmental commitments and pledges to investors. Your policy states, “Morgan Stanley recognizes the critical importance of a healthy environment … we are committed to considering environmental issues in all aspects of our business, how we conduct our own operations; and how we promote and develop new market opportunities.”

 

We also understand that the health of women and children are uppermost in the work done by Morgan Stanley’s UK Charitable Group. It would, therefore, seem pertinent to point out that there are 12 schools in the direct vicinity of the planned terminal and its diesel fumes.

Much is made by Morgan Stanley of its core values, “leading with exceptional ideas”, “doing the right thing” and “giving back” to communities. Your aspirations for Enderby Wharf, though, are regressive, notable in their absence of future technologies and are potentially damaging to the community’s health and environment. This investment is a straight forward money-making venture, constituting a major reputational risk for your organisation which cannot be bypassed by selling it on to another investor.

 

Our challenge to your plans has received strong support from London’s Mayor, Greenwich and Tower Hamlets Councils, our local MPs, MEP, and the London Assembly. We have attracted substantial media coverage which will be looking with interest at your new plans.  

With all the attention Enderby Wharf has received, there is now an opportunity to turn this situation around and create a flag ship development that the community and our Council can get behind. We are not only talking about a clean cruise facility that uses the latest innovations, but one that offers people a place where they really want to live. It’s time to say goodbye to the shoe box apartments stacked on top of each other and to create a place with high quality public realm that rejoices in its river frontage. Somewhere that enables people to function as a proper community where residents can walk, cycle, work and learn. Somewhere, importantly, that gives us a proper amount of affordable housing.

 

We hope that the recent turn of events signifies the end of the community’s long struggle with your organisation and developers, and that we can start to build bridges. With that in mind we would be grateful for the opportunity to lay before you the petition signed by our 8,000 supporters with their comments which we hope will provide you with a greater insight into to the strength and depth of the community’s concerns.

 

Yours sincerely

 

No Toxic Cruise Port

 

 

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