Coalition of organizations say no to Puerto Azul

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Puerto Azul is no where off the ground as yet; there is no government approval, and the developers have not even closed on the property as yet. However, opposition to the development of the mega resort on Northern and Sandbore Cayes has prompted loud opposition. On Tuesday, a coalition of members of the public, tourism and conservation organizations took a united position against Puerto Azul, which, if realized, would transform two private islands on the northern side of the Lighthouse Reef atoll into a lavish mega resort. According to a press release issued today, Oceana, Belize Tourism Industry Association, Belize Audubon Society, World Wildlife Fund, and Healthy Reefs Initiative say that  opposition to the project is based on its massive scale in an undeveloped area that is over 50 miles from the nearest mainland supply depot. Lighthouse Reef, part of the Mesoamerican Barrier Reef System, is one of only four atolls in the Caribbean and is home to the world renowned Blue Hole and Half Moon Caye Natural Monuments; both are protected areas and World Heritage Sites. The release says that while they support overnight and high-end luxury tourism, they are unable to support a tourism venture whose infrastructure will irreversibly alter the same environment that is meant to attract visitors and there are more appropriate sites for expansive projects that require large-scale alterations to the environment that yield lower impacts and provide more benefits to Belize’s economy.

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