Mérida, Yucatán, (July 21, 2021) .- “Each year, on average, more than 22 thousand hectares of jungle are deforested in Yucatán”, reported José Eduardo Bestard Barrera, head of the Department of Restoration and Protection of the Promotoría de Desarrollo Forestal de the National Forestry Commission (Conafor).
The official explained that agriculture, cattle, and the expansion of the real estate industry are the activities that most predate the state’s jungle.
In the last 100 years, according to estimates by Pronatura Peninsula de Yucatán A.C. (PPY), the state has lost between 60 and 70 percent of the original vegetation that the region used to have.
According to the biologist, Conafor collaborates with the recovery of forest vegetation through different programs and subsidies that it allocates to civil groups, projects of research institutions, and communities to undertake ecological restoration actions.
Bestard Barrera indicated that the agency has a goal of recovering 2,500 hectares of forest per year, through each of the corresponding programs they intend to implement.
For Efraín Acosta Lugo, Pronatura’s technical coordinator, it is evident that the loss of the forest is due to the significant urban growth that can be observed in the surroundings of Mérida above all, and this can cause severe problems in the near future”, he stressed.
The researcher added that companies must comply with municipal regulations and authorizations, but it is necessary to review and work together with the authorities so that these building regulations allow vegetation to be conserved.
Ways must be found, that are economically viable and environmentally sustainable. Most subdivisions, while increasing the availability of houses and real estate, are losing green areas,” he stressed.
On the other hand, he explained that in the last 100 years, cattle production on the east and henequen fields on the central part of the state, are the two activities that have changed the landscape and the vegetation the most, but the land has the possibility of being restored.
Source: La Jornada Maya
The Yucatan Times Newsroom
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