Dominican Government unveils plan to protect Hispaniola’s only rainforest
Santo Domingo.- The Government launched Tuesday the Plan to Recover and Preserve Los Haitises National Park (northeast), and issued, among other measures, a three-year deadline to completely eradicate all human activity within the protected area, home to Hispaniola’s only rainforest.
Environment minister Bautista Rojas, who also heads the Special Commission which designed the plan to preserve the ecosystem, said president Danilo Medina received the proposal yesterday, which includes RD$2.4 billion funding for the 43 activities to protect Los Haitises indefinitely.
He said pending compensation will be paid to those evicted from the protected area in 1992 and tp relocate human settlements in the conservation area.
The official said a census will start at once to determine how many people live in the Park’s core area, and a study of the five adjacent provinces to ensure a proper settlement. "The plan also includes a stronger protection component of the Park with patrols, as well as the development of an effective inter-institutional coordination with community participation."
As to housing for relocated people, National Housing Institute (INVI) director Alma Fernández said the Government will provide housing in an area near Los Haitises.
Los Haitises, located southeast of Samana peninsula, boasts unrivaled biodiversity fed by 110 rivers and streams and the most rainfall in the entire island of Hispaniola shared by Haiti and Dominican Republic.