Enviroland theme park comes under fire from critics
KUWAIT CITY: A development in Kuwait aimed at highlighting the effects of global warming has come under fire from environmentalists who have labelled the project “a disaster”.
Enviroland, due to open its doors in the second-half of 2013, is a temporary exhibition centre and theme park currently in construction in the desert, 20 km from Kuwait City, that is being billing by developers as ‘a showcase of nature’s ongoing war with mankind’.
Once complete, Enviroland will be around the size of 30 football stadiums, with parking space for over 200,000 cars.
One of Enviroland’s various zones, the Extinctionarium, will house several species of animal currently sitting high up the list of endangered species and under threat from climate change. By artificially speeding up the global warming process, organisers are hoping that visitors will be able to witness the animal’s extinction first hand.
“Just imagine being able to tell your friends that you saw the last remaining bottle-nosed blue hippo take its last breath,” Enviroland’s CEO Hassan Haznott told The Pan-Arabia Enquirer yesterday. “We’ll be offering an experience that cannot be matched anywhere else, and one that should prove invaluable in increasing the awareness of environmental issues.”
In the park’s Waterworld zone, visitors will be able to view the effects of a rise in sea levels, with a daily flooding of artificially-created low-lying rural communities populated by genuine villagers who are being shipped in for the exhibition.
“Never before has humankind been able to see the disastrous consequences of Mother Nature’s anger so close, but all from behind a 200-metre stretch of reinforced glass and from the comfort of a fully-reclining chair with VIP butler service,” said Haznott.
But environmental groups have come together against Enviroland. “What kind of madman dreamed this up?” asked Cyril Regis, official spokesman for the World Wrestling Federation in a statement yesterday.
Responding to Regis’ remarks, Hassnot agreed that while the consequences might be damaging in the short term, the long-term effects could be extremely beneficial to the planet.
“It’s awareness that we’re hoping to change here at Enviroland,” he said. “Once children have watched a polar ice-cap, shipped over at a cost of millions, melt before their very eyes, they’ll certainly think again before being wasteful with energy.”
Despite the concerns, other Middle East nations have been inspired by the groundbreaking vision of Enviroland, and several are planning similar themeparks that help highlight environmental concerns.
One major project already in the pipeline is Bahrain’s Oil Slick Island, a manmade island of ‘complete oil-based catastrophe’, which will see the world’s largest spillage of crude oil take place daily. Organisers claim that Emperor penguins and assorted rare birds flown in especially will be regularly doused in the black liquid to give visitors an idea of its destructive capabilities.
The UAE, not to outdone, last week unveiled plans for the world’s largest carbon footprint.