Development & Aid, Environment, Tierramerica - Ecobrief

Ecobreves – VENEZUELA: First Eco-Municipality

CARACAS, Dec 26 2012 (IPS) - Rómulo Gallegos, a municipality in the southwestern plains of Venezuela where cattle ranching is an economic mainstay, has become the first of the country’s 333 municipalities to adopt legislation on ecologically oriented land management. The bylaw passed by the local government on Oct. 29 states that this measure is aimed at ensuring “an environment that is safe, healthy and ecologically consistent with the dynamic balance imposed by nature” on its 23,148 sq. km of territory.

In addition, it “establishes a map of priorities, sets guidelines for the creation of municipal protected areas, such as gallery forests, and could be extended to other municipalities in the plains region,” said Lila Gil, the director of foreign affairs for Latin America at The Nature Conservancy, which has provided on-the-ground support for the initiative.

The municipality, bathed by tributaries of the Orinoco River, is home to more than 220 species of flora and 700 of fauna, as well as the Cuiva and Pumé indigenous peoples, who account for 4,000 of the municipality’s 29,000 inhabitants.

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