A reforestation project to mitigate the impacts of Enriquillo Lake’s rising level is being conducted between Baoruco and Independencia provinces (west), jointly by the UN’s Food and Agriculture and Organization (FAO) and the Agriculture and Environment ministries, Dominican Today reports.
Quoted by news source elnacional.com.do, the agronomist Manolo Sanchez Perez, Environment Provincial Office interim director, said 60 hectares have been reforested thus far, aimed at repairing the damages caused by the hyper-saline lake, nestled between the two provinces.
He said since taking over the post the previous director’s programs have been continued. “We continue the gatherings, the work in the construction of houses at Cabral, which are on the verge of completion.”
Sanchez added that all the pending programs in the matter of soil and forestry materials, the courses, and the workshops among others, continue being applied normally around the Caribbean’s biggest lake, which began its as yet unexplained swelling last year.
Enriquillo lake’s continuous expansion, according to an ecological group’s most recent measurements, stems from the water of the dam at Sabana Yegua, whose overflow goes to the South Yaque River.
The latest theory comes after months of studies and presentations by different researchers on the possible causes of Enriquillo’s unchecked growth, which has already swallowed farmlands, washed out roads and ruined homes.
The ecologist Jose Antonio Matos said when the dam’s waters reach the South Yaque, a part of it also ends up in Enriquillo, where their measurements are in his view alarming, and cause concern for the life in the zone. “We say even more because the part that went to Neiba Bay, through the floodplain at Canoa, has been arriving at the lake for more than seven years, and so in our opinion, is responsible for 80% of the more than 11 meters which it has grown in that same period.”
He said Enriquillo grew 20 centimeters in less than one month, while Azuei Lake shared with Haiti had grown three centimeters, compared with the latest measurement.
“The dimension of both swellings continues to show independence as far as the cause-effect factor, since our observations established that when the Blanco River is active with its south-to-north water flow, in the highway Malpasse, Azuei shows growth, and Enriquillo, when there’s inflow, such as in the last few days, its swelling expands,” Matos said, adding that their measurements prove that the Canoa floodplain and adjacent dikes must be recovered urgently.
For the original report go to http://www.dominicantoday.com/dr/local/2011/9/13/40909/Reforestation-aims-to-halt-major-lakes-unchecked-rise
Photo of flamingos at Lake Enriquillo by Emile athttp://www.trekearth.com/gallery/Central_America/Dominican_Republic/West/Baoruco/Lago_Enriquillo/photo176972.htm