BELIZE TOURISM & ENVIRONMENT PLAN

TOURISM REFORM POLICIES: The BPP will -

  • Revisit and review Master Tourism Plan in an effort to ensure emphasis on the overnight sector.

  • Create incentives for a renewed focus on ecotourism.

  • Protect & support Belizean-owned tourism Products & businesses.

 

ENVIRONMENTAL REFORM POLICIES: The BPP will -

  • Consult with ALL relevant stakeholders when drafting, revising, amending & implementing environmental legislation

  • Earmark revenues from environmental fines for rehab of affected areas

  • Ensure the EIA process is respected & adhered to

  • Implement & enforce the National Integrated Water Resource Management Policy & Act

  • Ensure Water Commission receives adequate operational funds

  • Protect all remaining riparian forests & begin a process of re-establishing riparian areas that have been deforested

  • Encourage & support community-based watershed organizations.

 

MARINE & COASTAL MANAGEMENT REFORM POLICIES: The BPP will -

  • Legislate the Integrated Coastal Zone Management Policy

  • Removal of the Ministerial discretion Provisions of the Fisheries Act

  • Finalize Belize Fisheries Act Revision Project

    • We draw attention to:

    • Immediately banning gillnet fishing in Belize’s waters.

    • To procure a fishing license, we will set up the system recommended by the southern commercial fishermen on September 5, 2013 at the Placencia Community Center and that is:

    • Defining a “Traditional Fisherman” as a born Belizean who has been fishing all their lives in Belize’s waters, and this tradition being passed down from at least 3 generations of born Belizean forefathers.

    • A Special committee of local traditional fishermen will be setup to proactively identify who all are current traditional fishermen. Anyone who does not make this list will have to go thru a vetting process by this committee, which will ultimately decide if they should get"traditional fisherman" status and thus a fishing license.

 

SOLID WASTE MANAGEMENT REFORM POLICIES: The BPP will -

  • Policy to separate garbage at household level and promote household composting.

  • Policy to establish hemp industry to replace non-biodegradable prod/ decrease deforestation

  • Policy for appropriate taxes for biodegradable vs. non-biodegradable products

 

RENEWABLE ENERGY RESOURCES: The BPP will -

The BPP will enact legislation supporting the:

  • Harvesting of tidal energy along coastline

  • Harvesting of energy in creeks and rivers

  • Promotion of wind, solar and magnetic energy sources and technology

  • Efficiently using our natural gas reserves for energy generation

  • Use of petroleum only as a reserve as shown by the planet

  • Review & implement the Belize Energy Assessment Policy

  • Policy to ensure Protected Areas remain PROTECTED

  • Enforcement of Protected Areas legislation

 

FOREST & PROTECTED AREAS MANAGEMENT:

As a result of the devastation of our pine forest by the pine bark beetle, Belize now imports 90% of its pine lumber used in the construction industry.  In 1995, the Forestry department was drastically downsized by the public service retrenchment. Since then, all reforestation and forest management programs were discontinued.  With very limited monitoring of the national forest reserves, illegal logging by Guatemalan poachers has resulted in annual losses in the millions.

  • The BPP will expand the Forestry Dept to meet long term goals

  • Enact a policy to allow sustainable use of Chiquibul forest resources to establish agricultural based communities that coexist in harmony with nature

  • The BPP will develop sustainable infrastructure initiatives in the Chiquibul to ensure access by local communities & security forces

  • Revise & implement penalty fees for deforestation

 

PROGRESSIVE FORESTRY & WOOD SECTOR POLICY:

The BPP will embark on a national reforestation and protection program with short and long term sustainable targets. In order to accomplish this monumental and ambitious task, the BPP administration will:

 

  • Place a moratorium on exportation of all sawn lumber to encourage development of value added wood products sector. Provide incentives, soft loans, technical and marketing assistance.

  • Expand the forestry department by setting up training and nursery stations in every district including the mountain pine ridge station.

  • Initiate a Harvesting program of local seeds of Fast growing wood species which will include Melina, Teak and several species of Bamboo. Some species may need to be imported.

  • Medium to long term species will include: Rosewood, mahogany, Cedar, guanacaste and other assorted hardwood species.

  • Develop a five mile reforestation and forest management zone along the entire western border.

  • Selective Woods harvested from the clearing of the zone will be used by local furniture producers

  • Allocate resources to replant the affected pine forests that were plagued by the pine bark beetle.

  • The district forestry stations will provide the seeds, nursery bags and technical assistance. Young people including families will be employed on contract and full time basis to fill bags, plant and attend to seedlings until such time that the saplings are ready to transplant.

  • Establish a “young forester’s Corp” consisting of young men and women who dropped out of school. They will be trained over a two year period to become Junior Forest officers and Rangers.

  • This reforestation program and wood products sector will employ thousands of Belizeans and families. It will also include a school base training component in the rural areas to encourage participation by our youth.  The reforestation program will be financed by grants from the World Bank Carbon Finance project and the BioCarbon Fund among other grant funding agents. This project will secure Belize's future wood demands in the housing and wood products industries. It will also establish Belize as a producer of carbon credits for sale on the international markets.

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