Development & Aid, Environment, Tierramerica - Ecobrief

Ecobreves – ARGENTINA : Alarm Raised Over Deforestation in Patagonia

BUENOS AIRES, Oct 22 2012 (IPS) - Local residents, environmentalists and Mapuche indigenous communities have raised the alarm over two major real estate development projects in Villa La Angostura, in the southern Argentine province of Neuquén, which would involve the destruction of 1,100 hectares of forests. Two companies, Cerro Bayo S.A. and Eidico S.A., are each planning to build residential communities and a golf course in a high-mountain area that the provincial government has classified as vulnerable under the land planning process required by the law on forests.

Hernán Giardini of Greenpeace Argentina told Tierramérica that “a house in the forest is one thing and an urban development is another.” The residential communities would be five times larger than the current urbanized area in the town, and located on a mountain slope.

The provincial government is taking a “permissive” and “unclear” stance towards these real estate projects, whose proposed construction in forested mountain areas would violate the law on forests, said Giardini.

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