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Costa Rica Environment Ministry to investigate officials responsible for approving Caribbean marina project

September 6, 2013

Costa Rica’s Environment Ministry (MINAE) ordered an investigation of officials involved in approving environmental viability permits for a proposed marina that would damage protected areas in the Caribbean province of Limón.

Environmental viability permission for the project was revoked earlier this week by the Attorney General’s Office, which ruled that the development would affect Cariari National Wetlands, a protected area of some 786 hectares.

Those under investigation include officials from the National Technical Secretariat (SETENA) and the National System of Conservation Areas (SINAC).

Environment Minister René Castro said the permits were granted without considering the existence of wetlands in the area, and he requested the investigation “to determine any administrative, disciplinary and judicial measures against all involved officials.”

The project, Isla Moín, was being promoted by Florida-based Soler Pazos Group as the largest proposed marina in the Caribbean, with a planned investment of some $450 million in 88 hectares of development.

It offered slips for 239 boats, plus real estate development consisting of 600 condominiums, a hotel with 250 rooms, 100 sea-view villas, 100 apartments and 10,000 square meters of space for businesses.

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