Venezuela: Ecologists reject construction of hotel in Mochima National Park

Various ecological societies of the country reject the national government’s proposal to build a luxury hotel on the island La Borracha, located in the National Park Mochima without a preliminary environmental study.

Through a notice published on the website of the Network of Environmental Organizations of Venezuela (www.red-ara-venezuela.blogspot.com), ecologists say there are legal and technical reasons to consider.

“The construction of a hotel of such proportions, in addition to breaking the law, requires prior environmental study to assess its impact, which has not been done,” says Drai Cabello from Conbive an ecological organization.

Recently the Ministry of Popular Power for Tourism announced the construction of a five star hotel on one of the islands belonging to the archipelago of Borrachas Islands (northern Anzoategui), in order to convert the Venezuelan state a tourist destination for the nation , as quoted by the Venezuelan News Agency.

The same complex, which is part of the 97 approved by President Nicolas Maduro for the region-would have 150 rooms, swimming pools for adults and children, tennis sports fields, volleyball and basketball courts, indoor gym and field of golf.

But the presidential decree number 276, Article 12 prohibits “any commercial establishment except sales of souvenirs, local handicrafts and dealers” within the national parks. This includes developments and public and private tourist clubs.

According to the organization Vitalis, the park is also regarded as primitive or wilderness area, ie it can only tolerate a moderate human use, for research, environmental education, hiking or visit quiet natural setting.

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Wildlife at risk

According to Cabello, the area is a natural “privileged” for sea turtle nesting, as the loggerhead (Caretta caretta), the green (Chelonia mydas) or Guaragua (Lepidochelys olivacea). In case the hotel is built, light pollution might scare these animals.
“Not to mention the amount of fresh water that is required to maintain the green areas, that we do not know from where it come from and debris and garbage that will harm birds and coral reefs.

In Mochima-space decreed National Park in 1973 – there is presence of common dolphins (Delphinus delphis) and whales as herring (Balaenoptera borealis). On the mainland are found the white-tailed deer (Odocoileus margaritae), the jaguar (Panthera onca), some armadillos (genus Dasypodidae) and pelicans (Pelecanidae).

“We are not against Venezuelan boost tourism. Instead, celebrate that Mochima be considered a tourist destination. But our mission is to preserve biodiversity. Hotels can be built nearby urban areas and bring tourists walk through different parts of park, “said Cabello.

According to the biologist, only 16% of Venezuelan natural territory has legal protection of environmental protection.

Source | http://www.eluniversal.com

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