Hydroelectric Dam Raises Concerns Over Protection of PV River
Nearly half a million have signed petition questioning Los Horcones river project.
A hydroelectric dam project that will allegedly divert one of Puerto Vallarta’s last pure rivers leading from the sierra to the ocean is not only illegal and unethical, local residents say, but reeks of high-level corruption and threatens to further endanger protected flora and fauna in the region.
Residents of Boca de Tomatlán and areas surrounding the Los Horcones river say they were surprised when about a dozen workers appeared with excavating equipment and dynamite in January, about 40 minutes south of Old Town Puerto Vallarta.
The river is part of a canyon ecosystem where jaguars, river otters, macaws and rare orchids remain in their natural habitat, surviving at the border of encroaching sprawl from Puerto Vallarta’s tourism and real estate developments.
“My concern is that the Los Horcones riverbed has been untouched by humans for years,” said Mario Morga, resident of Boca de Tomatlán and president of a local defense committee. He claimed that the damming of the river is directly related to a local resort, Garza Blanca, which intends to expand its property and the number of inhabitants and tourists.
“The mini-hydroelectric plant intends to make a dam and pipe out as much as 60% of the water from the natural tributary from 2,200 meters above the riverbed, thus modifying the natural environment in a drastic way, and this is the place of thousands of species of flora and fauna, some of them protected by law,” Morga said.
“The residents of the town of Boca of Tomatlán depend directly on the water provided by the Los Horcones river for daily use . . . . It has been maintained as a sustainable tourist area and would turn into an industrial development with this type of work.”
Read the rest and add your name to the petition at Mexico News Daily.
Learn more about Banderas Bay Initiative
Learn more about Grupo Ecologico de Puerto Vallarta
Learn more about The Western Ecological Society