Maritime Terrestrial Zone in danger in Marbella, Costa Rica?

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    The Federation for the Conservation of the Environment (FECON) recently requested the Municipality of Santa Cruz de Costa Rica to proceed and clean up the situation in the Maritime Terrestrial Zone (ZMT) of the Marbella sector, within the district of Cuajiniquil.

    It is worth noting that during the month of August, a series of lawsuits have been presented to the municipal entity, with the aim that they carry out the corresponding actions to correct what organizations consider as “illegalities”.

    Lawsuits filed:

    1) Annul a Municipal Agreement approved without a technical-environmental basis in December 2019, which authorized the installation of electric lighting that would be affecting the reproduction cycle of the turtles in this area, so that this installation is eliminated.

    2) Investigate excesses in the use of construction permits granted to a bar-restaurant that has established illegal infrastructures usurping the ZMT.

    3) Demolition of a wooden house within the ZMT, which was built in the area without having an environmental license as established by the Construction Law.

    4) The demolition of a bridge built without an environmental license, construction permits in the riverbed by Water Management in Playa del Coco in Marbella.

    5) In addition, information was requested from the Tempisque Conservation Area (ACT) on a complaint about logging within the mangrove swamp of Playa del Coco, which was presented by ACT itself, in order to add FECON as a complainant.

    Lack of criteria

    According to experts, the Maritime-Terrestrial Zone must be managed with legal criteria. It turns out, that the community of Marbella put in evidence, the lack of legal and environmental criteria to administer the Maritime Terrestrial Zone by the Municipality in Santa Cruz.

    In FECON’s opinion, “the systematic and continuous violation of the regulations by those who build irregularly and the inaction by the Municipality and MINAE is not a lesser evil.” The organizations foresee irreversible damage to the coastal environment and the mangrove ecosystem.

    “The lack of previous scientific studies for the works contradict the principles of the Public Administration on which the function of the Municipality should be based and that generate uncertainty regarding future impacts, which is why it calls for the elimination of the irregularities as establishes the legislation “.

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