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40+ Over the Water Cabanas Approved at Cayo Rosario #529894
04/15/18 06:14 AM
04/15/18 06:14 AM
Joined: Oct 1999
Posts: 59,038
oregon, spr
Marty Offline OP

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Marty  Offline OP

The west coast of Ambergris Caye is most famous for Secret Beach, the crystal clear water and the fly fishing flats that support a large industry on our island. And just off the coast of Secret Beach is a small mangroved island – very popular for flyfishing – called Cayo Rosario. A few years ago, it ended up in private hands – the transfer questionable at best. And one year ago, a development was proposed with about 100 over the water structures and a water and waste underwater pipeline to Ambergris Caye. UNDER Hol Chan Marine Reserve – under these important flats. I wrote this post about the transfer – the developer – and this CRAZY plan.

This SHOCKING proposal was approved this week. Over 40 OVER THE WATER STRUCTURES in a marine reserve – over water because this tiny island can’t hold them. Just think of the amount of dredging that will be needed to build 40+ cabanas and the infrastructure in this marine reserve.

Click here to read the rest of the article and see more photos in the San Pedro Scoop


Re: 40+ Over the Water Cabanas Approved at Cayo Rosario [Re: Marty] #529899
04/15/18 06:55 AM
04/15/18 06:55 AM
Joined: Oct 2003
Posts: 2,460
Belize City
K
Katie Valk Offline

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Katie Valk  Offline
K
DOE as never seen a bad EIA that can't be approved with $. Ask the humble fisherman minister.


Belize based travel specialist
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Re: 40+ Over the Water Cabanas Approved at Cayo Rosario [Re: Katie Valk] #530001
04/20/18 12:43 PM
04/20/18 12:43 PM
Joined: Apr 2018
Posts: 5
San Pedro
F
Fyrebyrd Offline
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Fyrebyrd  Offline
F
That is too bad as the Great Barrier Reef is in trouble which makes the one here even more important. Tell Mr Turley thank you when next you see him.

Last edited by Fyrebyrd; 04/20/18 12:44 PM.
Re: 40+ Over the Water Cabanas Approved at Cayo Rosario [Re: Marty] #530003
04/20/18 01:11 PM
04/20/18 01:11 PM
Joined: Oct 1999
Posts: 59,038
oregon, spr
Marty Offline OP

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Marty  Offline OP

Authorities won’t confirm if Cayo Rosario tourism project has been approved

The Department of Environment (DOE) cannot confirm if the tourism development proposed for Cayo Rosario has been approved. Cayo Rosario is a 10-acre privately owned island west of Ambergris Caye, packed with mangroves and teeming with wildlife. According to an online publication, the project was approved in the second week of April and calls for 80% of the project to be constructed off the island as over-the-water structures. San Pedro residents are highly against the project, concerned about its potential environmental hazards, and the fact that the island is part of the finalized expansion of the Hol Chan Marine Reserve.

The San Pedro Sun attempted to obtain an official confirmation from the DOE, but after several attempts, a definite answer regarding Cayo Rosario was not provided. The DOE representatives would not say yes or no and simply indicated that they needed to consult with their superiors before commenting on the matter. A visit to DOE’s website shows the project still under review. Furthermore, the consulting agency Tunich-Nah, who worked on the findings of the viability of the project told The San Pedro Sun that they know nothing of the project’s approval as yet.

Click here to read the rest of the article and see more photos in the San Pedro Sun


Re: 40+ Over the Water Cabanas Approved at Cayo Rosario [Re: Marty] #530134
04/27/18 02:05 PM
04/27/18 02:05 PM
Joined: Oct 1999
Posts: 59,038
oregon, spr
Marty Offline OP

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Marty  Offline OP

Cayo Rosario Developers must comply with Environmental Compliance Plan

Residents of Ambergris Caye are greatly concerned at reports alleging the approval of a tourism development on Cayo Rosario, located off the northern-western coast of Ambergris Caye within the Hol Chan Marine Reserve Zone IV: Cayo Rosario Conservation Zone. The Environmental Impact Assessment was given the green light by the Department of Environment (DOE) in December of 2017, while the National Environmental Appraisal Council (NEAC) is yet to weigh in on the first draft of the project’s Environmental Compliance Plan (ECP) which comes with specific stipulations demanding changes in the construction design. Some of the changes include a reduction of over-the-water structures and allowing access to fishing in the area to name a few. This initial draft will be discussed next week by NEAC, and once it is finalized the developers will then be required to sign it before they can start the project.

Many islanders are contesting the idea of over-the-water structures arguing that it is a violation of the ‘Queens Land’ regulation which stipulates that all land up to 66 feet from the high water level is considered national land. Opponents of the project have stated that if the developers want to develop the island they should build everything on the island and not over the water. “They do not own the seabed, so they should not be building over the water,” said a concerned islander. “This project is obviously too big for this tiny island, that is why they want to use our national land. Build on your land, not on what you do not own.”

Click here to read the rest of the article and see more photos in the San Pedro Sun





Re: 40+ Over the Water Cabanas Approved at Cayo Rosario [Re: Marty] #530348
05/10/18 01:21 PM
05/10/18 01:21 PM
Joined: Oct 1999
Posts: 59,038
oregon, spr
Marty Offline OP

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Marty  Offline OP

Cayo Rosario Development: Hol Chan Marine Reserve is For the People Of Belize, Not Private Gain

Development is planned and has been approved for Cayo Rosario on the leeward side of Ambergris Caye. This press release really says it all but first…a bit of background. And a few pictures.

Bottom Line: THERE SHOULD BE NO OVER THE WATER STRUCTURES IN HOL CHAN MARINE RESERVE.

Cayo Rosario is the caye that you see when you visit Secret Beach.

There is a huge sandbar to the south of Cayo Rosario where San Pedrano MJ Leslie and his team teach kite surfing…

And where the flyfishermen of Ambergris Caye take their guests for catch and release permit and bonefish…

It is also smack dab in the middle of Hol Chan Marine Reserve. In 2016, after being proposed by Minister Heredia and Mayor Guerrero and years of work, the reserve was expanded to include these important flats and mangroved islands – all area heavily used by the fishing guides and tour guides of Ambergris Caye. (Above I’ve added an arrow for Cayo Rosario and a label for Secret Beach))

Click here to read the rest of the article and see more photos in the San Pedro Scoop


Re: 40+ Over the Water Cabanas Approved at Cayo Rosario [Re: Marty] #530350
05/10/18 07:37 PM
05/10/18 07:37 PM
Joined: Oct 1999
Posts: 59,038
oregon, spr
Marty Offline OP

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Marty  Offline OP

Islanders Stand against Large-Scale Over-the-Water Development in the Hol Chan Marine Reserve

In April 2018, residents of San Pedro and Caye Caulker received word that the highly contested Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) for development at Cayo Rosario had been approved. This small mangrove caye lies in the center of the newly expanded Hol Chan Marine Reserve. The approval comes despite vehement objection to the construction of numerous over-the-water structures and extensive dredging within the newly expanded Hol Chan Marine Reserve.

Hol Chan Marine Reserve is the #1 attraction for visitors to Belize. Concerned Citizens of Ambergris Caye (CCAC) assert that it is the integrity of our natural resources and our protected lands that makes Ambergris Caye and Belize a premier tourism destination.

This small size of the island (currently about 6 acres) vs. the large-scale development plan, the location within a marine reserve and the heavy use of the area by our island community must be crucial considerations.

Critical points to note:

  • The final approval for the EIA is given by the National Environmental Appraisal Committee (NEAC). The board is comprised of members of 10 Government Agencies and 3 independent groups. There are no representatives from our island.
  • The monumental expansion and protection plan of the Hol Chan Marine Reserve, finalized in 2015, was spearheaded by our island’s leadership – Honourable Minister Manuel Heredia, Minister of Tourism and Civil Aviation, and Mayor Daniel Guerrero.
  • The developers use “new jobs” as justification for approval. Any benefit of new construction jobs created by this project is outweighed by the negative impact on EXISTING jobs… jobs that have existed for decades and support numerous island residents. Thousands of San Pedranos rely on tourism and sport fishing, two industries that are critical to the future viability of our island as a whole.
  • The bulk of the project is being built on public space, over the water. This reserve is an area for all Belizeans to enjoy and utilize, not for a private company to sell for personal profit.
  • In addition to 54 over-the-water bungalows, the Cayo Rosario plan includes submarine pipes and cables in a trench along our seabed – running over 2kms from the island to Ambergris Caye.
  • Objection from the community and tourism sector is overwhelming.
  • Objection from the island’s licensed tour guides/Tour Guide Association is unanimous.
  • The developers did not conduct sufficient meaningful consultation with the community on the project. NEAC cited them for this numerous times.
  • What island consultation did occur was subsequently disregarded by NEAC.

CCAC invite the board of NEAC, the Department of the Environment, our town council, the developers and all concerned citizens to a meeting at 5:30pm on May 15th at the Lions Den in San Pedro to discuss this project, its repercussions, and benefits.

This project sets a very dangerous precedent for building and developing over protected seabed areas and for dredging and excavating in a marine reserve.


Re: 40+ Over the Water Cabanas Approved at Cayo Rosario [Re: Marty] #530362
05/11/18 07:53 AM
05/11/18 07:53 AM
Joined: Oct 1999
Posts: 59,038
oregon, spr
Marty Offline OP

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Marty  Offline OP
ReefTV covering the Cayo Rosario issue, Elito Arceo interviewed along with call in's to the station (starts about 15 minutes into the show):


Re: 40+ Over the Water Cabanas Approved at Cayo Rosario [Re: Marty] #530366
05/11/18 09:22 AM
05/11/18 09:22 AM
Joined: Mar 2001
Posts: 2,665
Illinois, Arkansas,South Dakot...
bywarren Offline
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bywarren  Offline
If in fact this has been approved, there should immediately be an injunction filed to prevent any further activity until the courts can rule on this. The final decision should not be left up to government officials. To set a precedent that effectively allows private development on public land, water in this case, is outrageous. I would be very optimistic that the courts would rule against this. I would not be optimistic that government officials would rule in what is best for the public.
Public consultations and demonstrations are ignored in favor of what financially benefits others than the public.
Start court action before it is too late!!!! Get the right precedent set by law and prevent parties who benefit financially, either developers or public officials, from setting the precedent.

Having a public meeting or boat drive to show "solidarity" would be much more effective by those concerned contributing to a legal fund. Put your money instead of your voice to work.
Elito, if you decide to go that route, consider me to be one of the first to contribute.

Last edited by bywarren; 05/11/18 10:01 AM.
Re: 40+ Over the Water Cabanas Approved at Cayo Rosario [Re: Marty] #530368
05/11/18 10:39 AM
05/11/18 10:39 AM
Joined: Oct 2001
Posts: 6,002
San Pedro AC Belize
Diane Campbell Offline
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Diane Campbell  Offline
IMHO the island should never have been given to a private party, and it should not be developed at all.

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