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29 Jul / 2004

Spreading the word:

Tela Community Supports Environmental Impact Study for Tourism Development in Tela Bay

Now that the initial draft of the environmental impact study has been completed for the Los Micos Beach & Golf Resort project in Tela Bay, the Honduran Ministry of Tourism has launched a series of workshops in Tela to share the information with community members there.

The workshops are designed to spread the word about the resort’s expected environmental impact while at the same time allowing project developers and local community leaders to share experiences and concerns and suggest improvements for the document’s final draft.

Topics covered at the workshops included the overall concept of the project, biophysical and socioeconomic descriptions of the zone where the resort will be built and the threats and risks that may be faced. The information generated through the workshops will be collected and analyzed and incorporated into an Environmental Management Plan to cover the project’s construction and operational phases.

The workshops - which were held over a period of two days - began by presenting the draft document to Garifuna community leaders, who voiced their opinions and concerns regarding the environmental impact report and voiced their support for the project.

Workshops were also held with representatives of the private sector, many of whom are interested in investing in the project. Juan Bendeck, North Coast business leader and member of the Tela Bay Development Society, said told participants that the Los Micos Beach Resort “will be a reality because there is enormous interest on the part of the Honduran government and the Tourism Ministry to make it so.” He called the project an opportunity to launch even further tourism growth in Honduras and to create jobs in Tela, a region where unemployment is high.

“This project” he said, “which already enjoys the support of neighboring countries and the commitment and backing of financial organizations, will allow Honduras to continue being one of the best world class tourist destinations.”

The draft of the environmental impact report was also presented to representatives of local environmental NGOs, including PROLANSATE, which manages Jeanette Kawas National Park, and also the Tela Mayor’s Office.

Harry Hardy, Management Coordinator at the Honduran Institute of Tourism, said the project will play an important role in the country’s economic development, attracting investment capital to the Tela region.

Construction on the Los Micos Beach & Golf Resort will begin during the first trimester of next year, said Hardy. “That’s why we have launched a series of activities in Tela and nearby communities to lay a foundation for what will be the most important tourism project in Honduras.”


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