Leading environmental organisations, including Birdlife Cyprus, Terra Cypria, Cyprus Natural Coastline – Initiative for the Rescue of Natural Coasts, and the Cyprus Wildlife Society, are once again calling out the Department of Forests and the Ministry of Agriculture, Rural Development, and Environment regarding ongoing projects in Akamas.
The organisations’ representatives are members of the ad hoc Committee for the Special Environmental Assessment.
In light of all the evidence submitted by environmental groups to the relevant authorities regarding the breach of legally binding terms within the framework of the environmental approval of the Sustainable Development Plan for the National Forest Park of Akamas, the Minister of Agriculture, Rural Development, and Environment conducted an on-site visit to the area yesterday.
The purpose of the visit was to witness firsthand the implementation of the first phase of the road network improvement works in the region.
However, the official statements made by the Minister revealed much, but not what the environmental organisations were anticipating, as per their joint statement.
“How is it possible,” they noted in their statement, “that the Minister responsible fails to address the violations we have recorded in the area, which are glaringly obvious? For instance, how could the fact that the Aspros Potamos – Toxeftra – Lara road, which was supposed to have a maximum width of 6.2 meters, end up being 8-10 meters wide, and the circular road of Lara, which should have a maximum width of 4.2 meters, measure between 7.9 and 9.7 meters?”
“How was the presence of illegal restaurants and refreshment areas along the main nesting beaches of sea turtles in Cyprus, uncontrolled waste disposal in environmentally sensitive areas, excavations, earthworks, and multiple incompatible retaining walls in front of unique geomorphological formations not noticed?” the joint statement by the four organisations stated.