Civil Society Organizations Disgusted by Land Use Plan

La Serena, Landau 30. December 2018.
 
ZivilShame to the person who thinks badly of this. On 27. December – between Christmas and New Year’s, at the beginning of the summer vacation period – the Consejo Regional (advisory body of the Coquimbo Region) approved an intercommunity land use plan with thirteen votes to three. With this plan, it will be possible to industrialize areas that actually must be prioritized as protected areas. This plan would therefore allow port infrastructure to be built on the coast of La Higuera; the environmental importance of the region would thus be relegated to the background.
 
Numerous civil society organizations have already protested against this decision (1) before and inside of the Intendencia (the official seat of the Regional President) in La Serena. Nancy Duman was able to make a short statement to the Consejeros (regional council members) about the current plan’s one-sidedness and deficiencies:

1.  an already-existing plan, as well as the collective, scientific literature regarding the coast and the ocean area of “La Higuera-Isla Chañaral”, were not taken into account at all.

2.  the residents of the affected area were not involved in the decision, and their interests and needs were not respected.

3.  the plan opens the way for a contaminating industry (see Cruz Grande and “Dominga”), at the expense of an ecosystem of global importance.

 
Senator Adriana Muñoz of the Coquimbo Region also regrets the decision that was made. The plan is a bad instrument, because the interests of the citizens and residents were not taken into account at all. The decision is also an alarm signal regarding sustainable development. Chile has specifically said before the United Nations that it would develop in a sustainable manner, and that the requirements and needs of the residents would be taken into account.
 
Senator Adriana Muñoz of the Coquimbo Region also regrets the decision that was made. The plan is a bad instrument, because the interests of the citizens and residents were not taken into account at all. The decision is also an alarm signal regarding sustainable development. Chile has specifically said before the United Nations that it would develop in a sustainable manner, and that the requirements and needs of the residents would be taken into account.
 
ZivilAs a reminder:  again and again, just as in March of 2018 (then, a letter was sent to the then-Coquimbo Regional President), numerous organizations pointed out the dangers to the coastal and marine regions that would result from such a land use plan. Many studies from scientists and international organizations confirm the risks that such a plan would pose.
 
What should happen now? Before a land use plan can take effect, it has to first be reviewed and approved by the highest governmental supervisory authority. This very governmental agency had previously objected to the plan. If the plan nevertheless comes into force, it can be expected that fishers and environmental groups will sue the Chilean Government.
 
Annot. (1),  protesting organizations: Defensa Ambiental IV Región, MODEMA, Sphenisco, Elqui Sin Mineras, distintos gremios de pescadores, Centinela Ambiental Tongoy, Movimiento Ciudadano Borde Costero Sur comuna de Coquimbo, Juventudes Tongoy, Sector Rural Cordillera desde Pan de Azúcar hasta Las Cardas, Rkalafquen, Comunidad Ecológica Newen Kallfu de Coquimbo, Bloque Popular Igualdad, FENAPO de Coquimbo, Comité Ambiental Comunal de Coquimbo, Barrio Patrimonial de La Serena, Movimiento Nacional Salud Digna para Todos, Los Choros, Secretaría Ambiental ULS y UCN, Red Ambiental Norte, Comunidad Punta de Choros de Turismo, ODEFOT, Hormiguitas de Coquimbo, Movimiento Cultural Ambiental de Tierras Blancas, Acción Ecosocial y distintas organizaciones de Andacollo y Elqui, entre otras
 
W.K.
Translated by Erich Greiner
 
This posting is a summarization of the article, “Agrupaciones de la región de Coquimbo indignadas ante aprobación de Plan Regulador que permitiría industrializar zonas prioritarias para la conservación”. Written by our employee Alicia Isabel Acuña, published in La Serena online on 27.December 2018.
 
   
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