Friday, 6 June 2014

Puerto Azul Concerns about the island's development

This mega project Puerto Azul is seen critical by the public where the organizers are wanting to build on the two Northern Caye and Sanbore Caye which is located on the Lighthouse Reef Atoll. It was announced while Minister of Tourism Manuel Heredia Jr and Minister of Trade and Investment Erwin Contreras attend the French Cannes Film Festival in France. 
Their has not been a go ahead, but their where plans to examine the island. With the seven NGOs, including the Belize Tourism Industry Association, OCEANA, Healthy Reefs, World Wildlife Fund, Mar Alliance, APAMO and the Belize Audubon Society they joined together and  released a statement on the exact description of the presentation resort development project which was issued on Thursday. Even though the project is still willing to continue,  the confusion by the environmentalists are at cabinet's agreement by the multi-million dollar project. But during the event Trade and Economic Development, Erwin Contreras and the Minister of Tourism, Manuel Heredia along with his wife where photographed which made the cabinet to agree cautiously. This risky move to the condition of the island is based on the limited land resource which  has stakeholders not willing to move forward. 

 The plans for this  two island at the Light house Reef Atoll it will include the facilities as follows: airstrip, mega hotels, shopping malls, resort, golf course, villas, spa, restaurants and the 1,000 acre to be used, employ 1,000 people and make a fitting space for 2,000 people. But, with the high cost of living in Belize it will be one of the worthy luxuria living. But, what about the island's protected habitat

Since the discussion of the project, one year ago the planning of the project concerns Chief Environmentalist Martin Alegria is to see the fisheries and protected area to be destroyed. According Mike Singh he also mention that the island is to limited to build any structure in the island. It will affect the reef and the environment while it is being built. and is suppose to be kept on a level of  where the agreement can be made. With the opinion of Sing he thinks the project is to over extreme.

According to Amanda Acosta, Executive Director Belize Audubon Society her concern about Puerto Azul should not be given the go ahead as she explained: 

“Belize Audubon [Society] is very concerned about the proposed Puerto Azul development.  We do not feel that a mega-development of this nature is best suited for out in Lighthouse Reef Atoll. It’s in proximity so if you’re talking any kind of dredging, filling, you have to ask and beg what will happen to these lobster fishermen or conch fishermen.  They are dealing with invertebrates that are very sensitive to siltation, to any kinds of dredging and in addition we have tour guides. ”

Since the EIA was given permission, it was not yet been looked at by the Department of Environment. 

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