Sunday, 21 October 2012

The Destruction of the Land of Grace (Barinas chapter)

The National Forest Reserve of Caparo stopped being a natural reserve years ago. This area, of 140 square kilometres, has been largely destroyed since 2004. There is little left there. If you speak Spanish, you can read about it here.
They used to live there, there are very few left now in that area

A little bit of history in a nutshell (but I really recommend you to read the whole article if you read Cervantes' language):

  • Established in 1961
  • Until the eighties the forest was still kept.
  • Between 1982 and 1989 the State allowed the extraction of wood by private and state companies. This was done with less and less control. According to the Universidad de los Andes (ULA), for the year 2000 there was only 49% of the forest left
  • In 2001 the new minister for Environment, Osorio, allowed the "control of forest by the communities", which simply meant that the squatters were allowed to run amok. Between 2002 and 2004 70000 hectares of primaeval forests disappeared.
  • There are now 14000 hectares left, half of them protected by the ULA and half of them isolated pockets bound to disappear very soon.

The ULA has some proposals to try to rescue what is left...but it has hardly any money. Meanwhile, Venezuelans at large haven't got the slightest clue about what is sustainable development. They are destroying their nature at an ever faster pace.

Lastly this video. One thing that calls my attention is how even the university people basically stress above all the fact THEY are losing the wood resources for research. It seems the loss in biodiversity and the purpose of an actual natural reserve are not very much in their priorities. It is also sad that other people from the state of Barinas and Mérida didn't seem have a voice and didn't come with initiatives to stop this destruction before.

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