New Presidential Decree On Protected Areas

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Dolores1

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You are right, one zero to many, it should read 202-04. I corrected it.

I am translating now the press statement.
 

Keith R

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Oh cool! I look forward to reading it -- although you could post the original in Spanish, because a good many of us read it even if our spoken Spanish is not quite as good as it should be.... :)
 

NALs

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National Parks, protected or not?!

The issue of protected land is a hairy one, especially in areas where there is potential for certain economic activities, usually tourism and/or mining related.

With the case of Parque Nacional del Este, the potential lies along the shoreline south from Bayahibe all the way to the lagoon which separates Hispaniola from Saona island.

With the case of Jaragua, the area of concern is the shoreline of Bahia de Las Aguilas, due to its post card perfect white sand beach.

Should these areas be developed?

- As with everything, depends. Ecologically speaking, no. If we value the natural sorrounding and the natural beauty, not to mention respecting what has already been designated as protected land, the development of any land within a national park should be off limit, regardless.

Economically, yes. It's a fact of life that the only people who have time and energy to debate over things such as the environment are people who have a full belly, some pocket change, and secured much of the basics for living. A person who lacks the basics will not have time or energy to focus on such discussions, because in the order of things, people first need air, health, food, then everything else.

With the case of Parque Nacional Jaragua, it becomes much more plausible the idea of developing part of the coast line for low density, high value tourism. This will create jobs in an area of the country that has been forgotten by all governments of the republic, while maintaining an ecological integrity between development and nature. It would be preferable to have no development in such fragile natural areas and simply have the impoverished citizens of those areas move to more prosperous regions of the republic. The fact that these people have not packed up and moved shows that they don't want to leave the place where they live right now.

With the case of Parque Nacional del Este, the shoreline is extremely appealing to tourist developers. More resorts along the western coast of the park would increase employment opportunities, increase tax collection for the government, occasional upgrades in local infrastructure, etc. The negative is the lost of habitat for natural flora and fauna.

Should such developments be made?

I will not answer that, but I will say that those who call for protection of nature need to do a close evaluation to what effect such protection takes upon otherwise employable people. Is it worth it to eliminate a potential benefit of creating hundreds of much needed employment for the benefits of sea turtles, migratory birds, and local flora?

In other words, is it wise to deny a human being from being able to eat, be independent, earn something simply to save fauna and flora?

Is there an ethical dilemma here regarding the responsibility the state has to provide opportunities of employment to its citizens as oppose to saving animals and plants?

Is the economic cost or loss of protecting such places worth it?

Do we give preferances to people or to plants and animals?

These are the fundamental questions behind such issues of developing protected land or to keep the protection in place.

-NALs
 

Keith R

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A faleticious argument, Nals, based on a false either-or proposition.

As we have said several times before in this thread (go read it over again), the people in the area can be employed well in eco-tourism ventures without a single hotel being built in the protected zone.

Besides, Nals, if you really know the DR as well as you purport to, you'd know that the history of development and employment in several of the tourism poles in the DR usually draws in more employees from other areas than it does employ the local poor.

I said it before above, and I'll repeat it again here: I and many people are NOT arguing against development per se. We're just arguing against this kind of unsustainable, short-term, and short-sighted "development."
 

Mirador

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NALs said:
... The It would be preferable to have no development in such fragile natural areas and simply have the impoverished citizens of those areas move to more prosperous regions of the republic. The fact that these people have not packed up and moved shows that they don't want to leave the place where they live right now... -NALs


Goes to show that you have never visited the place. The region of the Barahona peninsula south of Cabo Rojo is uninhabited and uninhabitable, except for a small enclave of fishermen huts on the shore line north of Bahia de Las Aguilas, known locally as La Cueva. I have told those able to keep a secret, why that region will never be developed, it would create an international incident...
 

NALs

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Mirador said:
Goes to show that you have never visited the place. The region of the Barahona peninsula south of Cabo Rojo is uninhabited and uninhabitable, except for a small enclave of fishermen huts on the shore line north of Bahia de Las Aguilas, known locally as La Cueva. I have told those able to keep a secret, why that region will never be developed, it would create an international incident...
Tourism development in Bahia de Las Aguilas would affect the population of the entire province of Pedernales, from Pedernales itself to Oviedo, perhaps (almost certain) as far away as Barahona and (without fault) the southern region of Haiti along the Massif de La Selle or Sierra de Bahoruco.

Despite the fact that Pedernales is one of the least inhabited provinces in the republic, it still manages to retain over tens of thousands of people. Most are desperately poor, poorer than most Dominicans, in part due to the scarcity of water and the salty nature of the terrain, and in part due to the harsh weather conditions which are semi-arid to arid in places.

To tell you the truth, that region resembles typical flat islands of the Caribbean, such as Aruba, Anguilla, Turks and Caicos, etc in terms of scarcity of potable water, land that is hostile towards subsistence farming, less than ideal climate except for beach oriented tourism, etc.

Development of tourist facilities along Bahia de Las Aguilas will give those people and other unemployed Dominicans and Haitians employment opportunities that currently does not exist.

As for whether it should be done? That is a matter I will not touch upon.

Economically yes, ecologically no, especially given that its one of the main nesting places for a few varieties of endangered sea turtles.

Low density, high value tourism is preferable to the ubiquos all inclusive self contained monstrocity typical of Dominican tourist areas.

-NALs
 

Dolores1

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Original Statement in Spanish

DECLARACION PARA LA PRENSA DE LA COALICION PARA LA DEFENSA DE LAS AREAS PROTEGIDAS

Antecedentes

El Presidente Leonel Fern?ndez, el 30 de diciembre del 2005, ha firmado el Decreto Presidencial 686-05.

El decreto establece que "La Ley Sectorial de Areas Protegidas No. 202/04, del 30 de julio del 2004, dej? fuera de las restricciones para el desarrollo tur?stico impuestas por la categor?a de Parque Nacional a una franja de terreno localizada en el Parque Nacional del Este en Bayahibe, y otra en el Parque Nacional Jaragua en Pedernales, estableciendo nuevas categor?as de conservaci?n, superficies, ubicaciones y l?mites."

"Se crea la Comisi?n para el desarrollo turistico de las franjas liberadas por la Ley Sectorial de Areas Protegidas en las Zonas de Pedernales y Bayahibe, que estar? presidida por el Secretario de Turismo e integrada, adem?s por el Secretario de Medio Ambiente, el Secretario de Obras P?blicas, el Director del Instituto Nacional de Alcantarillado y el se?or Marino Ginebra."

LA COALICION PARA LA DEFENSA DE LAS AREAS PROTEGIDAS DENUNCIA LAS SIGUIENTES IRREGULARIDADES EN LA CONFECCION DEL DECRETO

1- Es falso que la Ley Sectorial de Areas Protegidas 202-04 deja fuera las restricciones para el uso tur?stico de las ?reas protegidas Guaraguao — Punta Catuano y Bah?a de las Aguials. Se limita a cambiar su categor?a de manejo, la cual es actualmente Categor?a VI: Paisaje Protegido.

2 - La Ley Sectorial de Areas Protegidas 202-04 no contiene ning?n art?culo ni punto en que se hable de "liberar" ?rea alguna. Como ya se ha explicado se limita a realizar un cambio de categor?a de manejo de dos zonas en los parques nacionales del Este y Jaragua.

3 - Supeditar la Secretar?a de Estado de Medio Ambiente a la Secretar?a de Estado de Turismo, es una violaci?n a la Ley 64-00, que establece que es a la Secretar?a de Medio Ambiente y Recursos Naturales a quien le corresponde regir el Sistema Nacional de Areas Protegidas, as? como el ordenamiento de sus territorios conjuntamente con el Secretariado T?cnico de la Presidencia, seg?n el Art. 30 de la Ley 64-00.

LA COALICION PARA LA DEFENSA DE LAS AREAS PROTEGIDAS REALIZA AL RESPECTO LAS SIGUIENTES CONSIDERACIONES

* El decreto 686-05 viola la Ley General sobre Medio Ambiente y Recursos Naturales (64-00) y la Ley Sectorial de Areas Protegidas y Biodiversidad (202-04).

* Durante la XVI Conferencia de la UNCTAD celebrada en Brasil el actual Presidente Fernandez expres?: "Existe una corriente en el pa?s que considera que la aprobaci?n de una ley que excluye ?reas protegidas de deerminadas zonas del territorio nacional contribuye al desarrollo. Otra corriente, a la cual me sumo, considera que la explotaci?n indiscriminada de los recursos del pa?s sin tomar en consideraci?n la dimensi?n medioambiental no contribuye al desarrollo."

• El Decreto 686-05 contradice la posici?n del Doctor Leonel Fern?ndez Reyna, Presidente de la Republica, quien durante la campa?a del a?o 2004 se manifest? en numerosas ocasiones su adhesi?n a la corriente que considera a las ?reas protegidas como imprescindibles para el desarrollo sostenible.

• El Parque Nacional del Este es visitado anualmente por alrededor de medio mill?n de turistas, lo que ha generado riquezas a las comunidades aleda?as, quienes se ver?an perjudicadas con la privatizaci?n de este Patrimonio Nacional.

• De destruirse el ?rea protegida del Parque Nacional del Este, las zonas tur?sticas asentadas se ver?an privadas de su principal lugar de destino para las excursiones, lo cual supondr?a un golpe mortal para buena parte del sector hotelero dominicano.

• La Coalici?n para la Defensa de las Areas Protegidas considera en extremo irregulares las maniobras que de manera sistem?tica se han estado realizando, en el anterior y presente gobierno, para ofertar a la venta y realizar injerencias en la gesti?n de diferentes ?reas protegidas propiedad del Estado Dominicano, enajenando de manera ilicita el Patrimonio Nacional. Debido a esta situaci?n se solicitar? a la Comisi?n Para la Transparencia y Etica presidida por el Dr. Jose Joaquin Bid? Medina que inicie una investigaci?n de todo aquel funcionario p?blico vinculado al negocio inmobiliario y tur?stico, ya sea de manera directa o a trav?s de otros funcionarios y familiares. Asimismo solicitamos se investigue a fondo los posibles intereses existentes por parte de las personas f?sicas incluidas en la Comisi?n.

LA COALICION PARA LA DEFENSA DE LAS AREAS PROTEGIDAS REALIZA LAS SIGUIENTES SOLICITUDES

• La Coalici?n para la Defensa de las Areas Protegidas solicita al se?or Presidente Leonel Fernandez Reyna la derogaci?n del Decreto 686-05, y que honre el compromiso de respeto al Sistema Nacional de Areas Protegidas, asumido antes de ser electo como Presidente de la Rep?blica.

• Igualmente la Coalici?n para la Defensa de las Areas Protegidas le solicita encarecidamente al se?or Presidente Leonel Fernandez Reyna que diriga la inversi?n tur?stica existente y las nuevas inversiones que pudieran desarrollarse en el pa?s, hacia los extensos terrenos con vocaci?n turs?stica disponibles fuera del Parque Nacional Jaragua, parte de la Reserva de la Bi?sfera declarada por la UNESCO y el Parque Nacional del Este, considerado para ser declarado como Patrimonio Cultural de la Humanidad.

* La Coalici?n para la Defensa de las Areas Protegidas solicita a los organismos del Estado competentes que se someta a Manuel P?rez G?mez, Secretario de Estado de Obras p?blicas, quien violando la legislaci?n ha irrumpido dentro del Parque Nacional del Este destruyendo importantes zonas de bosque.

Hacemos un llamado a la Sociedad Civil dominicana, a las organizaciones c?vicas, a los ambientalistas, al sector tur?stico nacional y a los organismos de cooperaci?n internacional, a comprometerse urgentemente con la defensa del Sistema Nacional de Areas Protegidas de la Rep?blica Dominicana.

La Coalici?n Para la Defensa de las Areas Protegidas est? ya realizando una campa?a de informaci?n a todos los organismos internacionales referente a la trascendencia del Decreto Presidencial 686-05 y pide p?blicamente el apoyo de todas las organizaciones internacionales, para luchar contra las maniobras destructivas que pol?ticos corruptos y especuladores inmobiliarios llevan a cabo para usufructuar fraudulentamente algunas ?reas protegidas de la Rep?blica Dominicana.

Coalici?n para la Defensa de las Areas Protegidas
 

Chris

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NALs said:
Economically, yes. It's a fact of life that the only people who have time and energy to debate over things such as the environment are people who have a full belly, some pocket change, and secured much of the basics for living. A person who lacks the basics will not have time or energy to focus on such discussions, because in the order of things, people first need air, health, food, then everything else.NALs

Economically no! We're talking with a group of over 100 fishermen right at the moment who are at their wits end. They have empty bellies you see, and much time and no energy. No food = no energy. Wrong development, overfishing and incorrect use of resources, over supply of tourists in a sensitive area, and irresponsible tourism and living has deprived them of their food source.

We are not talking theory.. We are talking facts. Get the environmental aspects right and balance it with the resource intensiveness that simply living requires these days. It is called 'environmental integration'. Good term for you to study up on.

NALs said:
In other words, is it wise to deny a human being from being able to eat, be independent, earn something simply to save fauna and flora?
-NALs

It is singularly unwise to sacrifice flora and fauna. That is mostly the stuff that keeps us in food on the longer term. Go and read up on just how sensitive the interaction between natural resources and the demands of modern life is. And you are fond of quoting examples from Africa. Go and have a look at how irresponsible management of natural resources deprive people of food. In fact, closer to where you are and an example most would understand... go do a search on 'dustbowl' and read.
 

Dolores1

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Lisette Gil, executive director of the Bayahibe Association of Hotels, stressed that as a pro-business tourism entity they are in favor of development of the communities and tourism. But they are in favor of quality development today so that there can be room for future tourism development for the future generations. She stressed that there has been a traditional lack of serious planning, and instead what there has been is government responding to economic interests. "If we transfer the rights to the protected area then what are we going to show for in 15 years when all is built. The Spanish hoteliers are already saying the country is losing its competitiveness. We cannot let this happen to benefit just a few. This is not about politics, it is about country," she stated.

The Association of Bayahibe was the first to bring to the country Blue Flag certification, which means quality beach, but public beach.
 

Keith R

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Yes, and in the case of Parque del Este, much of what's there can be visited and appreciated without a single hotel even being built within the confines of the protected zones.
 

suarezn

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Mirador said:
Goes to show that you have never visited the place. The region of the Barahona peninsula south of Cabo Rojo is uninhabited and uninhabitable, except for a small enclave of fishermen huts on the shore line north of Bahia de Las Aguilas, known locally as La Cueva. I have told those able to keep a secret, why that region will never be developed, it would create an international incident...

You need to stop with the "secrets"...Hey guys If I told you this, the world is going to end...Just tell us for god's sake. You know you want to...

Speaking of that area, the road you take from the main road towards Bahia De Las Aguilas is a very strange looking road (deep red almost as if blood had been spilled all over it). Lovely in a creepy kind of way...Never seen anything like that in my life.
 

Mirador

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suarezn said:
...Speaking of that area, the road you take from the main road towards Bahia De Las Aguilas is a very strange looking road (deep red almost as if blood had been spilled all over it). Lovely in a creepy kind of way...Never seen anything like that in my life.


Suarezn, you are definitely psychic. If you were playing "hot and cold" on that road, I'd say your toes were probably scorching ;-). How about playing now "twenty questions"?
 

NALs

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Chris said:
Economically no! We're talking with a group of over 100 fishermen right at the moment who are at their wits end. They have empty bellies you see, and much time and no energy. No food = no energy. Wrong development, overfishing and incorrect use of resources, over supply of tourists in a sensitive area, and irresponsible tourism and living has deprived them of their food source.

We are not talking theory.. We are talking facts. Get the environmental aspects right and balance it with the resource intensiveness that simply living requires these days. It is called 'environmental integration'. Good term for you to study up on.
Well then,

Since you claim this to be fact, would it be possible to see tangible proof of this?

I don't mean telling a story of someone you met, etc, but a study, a report, something quantified to support these "facts" you are claiming?

After such thing is supplied, I will carefully review and return an opinion. Otherwise, I stand where I stand.

Chris said:
It is singularly unwise to sacrifice flora and fauna. That is mostly the stuff that keeps us in food on the longer term. Go and read up on just how sensitive the interaction between natural resources and the demands of modern life is. And you are fond of quoting examples from Africa. Go and have a look at how irresponsible management of natural resources deprive people of food. In fact, closer to where you are and an example most would understand... go do a search on 'dustbowl' and read.
Are you trying to say that the Dominicans and Haitians employed in tourism directly or indirectly are being deprieved of food?:ermm:

It is unwise to sacrifice flora and fauna for unproductive high cost (monetarily and in non monetary form) investments.

However, if there is an investment that can cause more benefits than harm, it should be something worth considering. Not saying I support development or not, but it's clear that I am pro-business, pro-capitalism, and pro-market. I'm not pro-those things at the expense of the environment, but rather careful evaluation on whether what's given up will be worth it.

As far as I can tell, most of DR1ers get their food not because of the environment or protection of such, but because of modern capitalism which allows for food to be grown efficiently and quickly in places where food production was never productive and efficiently transported from one end of the globe to the supermarket or colmado near you, just so you can enjoy eating such thing later this evening where ever you are.

-NALs
 

aegap

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suarezn said:
Speaking of that area, the road you take from the main road towards Bahia De Las Aguilas is a very strange looking road (deep red almost as if blood had been spilled all over it). Lovely in a creepy kind of way...Never seen anything like that in my life.


I've heard an urban legend regarding Alcoa killing every Taino in the area on that road.
 
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NALs

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Chris said:
Why don't you come on down here and write it up for us. It will be good for you:classic:
Perhaps I will someday soon.

-NALs
 
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