A board member and co-founder of the Everglades Foundation has a murky past as a convicted polluter.
By Jacob Engels
Another chapter in hypocrisy. How come no one is calling out Paul Tudor Jones for being a polluter and environmentalist hypocrite?
Who is Paul Tudor Jones…
Paul Tudor Jones, founder of Tudor Investment Corporation, a private asset management company and hedge fund, with an estimated net worth of $4.6 billion, has served as former chairman and current member of the Board of Directors for the foundation. In sharp contrast to his public persona of a philanthropic environmentalist however, Mr. Jones has been both a polluter and environmentally irresponsible, and not just once.
The first incident for Paul Tudor Jones happened in the time between 1987 and 1989, while the hedge fund king was building his several thousand acre “wildlife preserve/hunting retreat” in Maryland. Jones had hired on marine engineer William Ellen to develop the property to Jones’ specifications, including an enormous hunting lodge, as many as 10 ponds, and roads throughout the property. According to Ellen, Paul Tudor Jones II, “decided early on not to pay any attention” to the need for complying with federal guidelines relating to wetlands and even disregarded the need for anti-pollution permits.
In doing so, PTJ’s hunting preserve and estate was responsible for filling in 86 acres of tidal and non-tidal wetlands. Claiming ignorance, Paul Tudor Jones evaded prosecution and instead let his engineer William Ellen take the fall. Ellen received 2 years in jail for violations to the federal Clean Water Act. It was not until 1990 that PTJ accepted responsibility for violating the Clean Water Act by pleading guilty to a misdemeanor criminal charge. Some environmentalist. He also paid $1 million dollars in fines and another $1 million in restitution – serving no jail time. Having not learned his lesson after paying fines amounting to more than most people make in their life, Paul Tudor Jones was again caught in 1996. This time, his Key West compound in Islamorada demonstrated coliform microbes far exceeding state standards – with some samples as high as 680 colonies per millimeter compared to the allowable level of 70 colonies per millimeter.
Through spokespersons for Save our Everglades, he tried to shrug off the water test results by questioning the veracity of the samples, though documents demonstrate that the samples were taken both a half mile off Jones’ property as well as directly next to it. A re-sampling of the waters near the Islamorada estate is scheduled for the near future in order to determine current levels of coliform microbes. Jones’ estate is situated upon a private cove, with a pier and sea wall in order to provide protection for his 61ft. yacht.
Though the studies completed in 1996 indicated that the microbe levels were potentially due to leaking septic tanks from the estate, another potential source was suggested by an unidentified Florida Marine Patrol officer, who stated that if the sewage holding tank on a moored yacht was emptied, it might account for significantly increased coliform microbe colonies in the waters in and around Jones’ Islamorada estate.
Meaning Paul Tudor Jones was quite literally taking a dump in our ocean. Sigh…next time your in the Florida Keys you may be left wondering what that floating brown log is.
The Federal Water Pollution Control Act, better known as the Clean Water Act prohibits dumping such untreated sewage into the navigable water of the United States – defined by the act as ANY waters within 3 miles of shore, whether public or private waters.
Most recently, the hedge fund billionaire purchased a mansion in Palm Beach, Florida called Casa Apava. The oceanfront property is situated on just under 6 acres of lush lawn, including 420 feet of oceanfront. The purchase was made just one week after Jones had spoken on the increasing income inequality in America. One of us…one of us.
The property boasts some impressive features, including a tennis court, two pools, and a massive sprinkler system to distribute hundreds of gallons of water onto the property’s lush lawns and landscaping. No word yet on the phosphorus content of the fertilizer being used to maintain the mansion’s grounds. But hey…I’m sure he has the money to pay the fines.
Tudor Jones’ massive Palm Beach estate.
Environmental groups such as the Everglades Foundation and Save our Everglades have spent millions of dollars lobbying to spend taxpayer dollars to purchase land for unclear environmental efforts, as well as lobbying efforts to fight those that they identify as polluters, while Paul Tudor Jones stands at the helm of these organizations.
If these groups have a polluter masked as an environmentalist as a member of their leadership, perhaps it is time that a closer look was taken at the motivations of the Everglades Foundation.
Jacob Engels, is the Founder of East Orlando Post & Seminole County Post. He is a seasoned political operative who has led numerous statewide political groups and has worked on several high-profile local, statewide, and national races. Jacob has been interviewed on national television & radio programs, with his work having been featured in the Orlando Sentinel, New York Times, Washington Post, Miami Herald and other publications nationwide. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org