Costa Rica Coffee Guide

Government to Analyze Expropriation Controversy

May 18, 2007

President Oscar Arias has ordered yet another analysis of the long-standing dispute between property owners and environmentalists over the boundaries of Las Baulas National Park in the northwestern province of Guanacaste.

The dispute, a subject of countless lawsuits and a review by the Government Attorney’s office, stems from a debate over whether the park was intended to be entirely marine, or partly on land.

Environmentalists say that the land fronting the beach – Playa Grande, which ranks as the most important leatherback nesting beach in Central America – must be protected immediately to save the critically endangered leatherback sea turtle.

Local developers maintain that the land is rightfully theirs, and expropriation is illegal (TT, April 13).

According to legislator Maureen Ballestero of the National Liberation Party (PLN), the expropriations should have occurred in 1995, when the park was created, but instead the process was delayed by lawsuits and government foot-dragging, leading to the current crisis.

“The property is now much more expensive and the government doesn’t have the money to pay, and worse, we could see disorganized tourist development because of it,” said Ballestero, adding that it is necessary to act now.

Environmental groups, meanwhile, have mobilized to raise funds, beginning with the recent, well-publicized Great Turtle Race. The race not only raised awareness of the turtles’ plight via major television and news outlets across the world, but also raised more than $250,000 for research and “on-the-ground conservation” at the park, according to Marshall Maher, a spokesman for Conservation International, one of the groups that helped organize the race.

 

You may be interested

Ports and highways blocked in rejection of Costa Rica’s IMF proposal
Costa Rica
21728 views
Costa Rica
21728 views

Ports and highways blocked in rejection of Costa Rica’s IMF proposal

The Tico Times - October 1, 2020

Protesters blocked roads and ports in different parts of Costa Rica on Wednesday in a protest against planned negotiations with…

Costa Rica coronavirus updates for Wednesday, September 30
Costa Rica
5592 views
Costa Rica
5592 views

Costa Rica coronavirus updates for Wednesday, September 30

Alejandro Zúñiga - September 30, 2020

Costa Rica announced 24 new coronavirus-related deaths over the last day for a total of 904, according to official data…

Some 34 million jobs lost in Latin America due to pandemic
Business
3343 views
Business
3343 views

Some 34 million jobs lost in Latin America due to pandemic

Carlos MANDUJANO / AFP - September 30, 2020

The two aspirers for the presidency of Costa Rica, the evangelical preacher Fabricio Alvarado and the former minister Carlos Alvarado, reach the closing of the electoral campaign for April 1st with a technical draw, according to a poll disclosed this Friday.