Regional — 21 June 2013 — by Adele Ramos
Chiquibul: Alarming Threats to Biodiversity, Peace and National Stability

Making the Chiquibul Forest a national conservation priority

Belize’s most prized forest, the Chiquibul – opulent with natural resources such as highly coveted hardwoods and exotic species of wildlife – has been under siege for decades, a prime target for illegal incursions, and Friends for Conservation and Development (FCD), in an effort to raise awareness of the escalating threats to the biodiversity of that forest, is hosting a special symposium next month.

The Chiquibul Symposium 2013 will be held under the caption: “Alarming Threats to Biodiversity, Peace and National Stability.”

The session will be held from 8:00 a.m. to 12:00 noon on Friday, July 19, 2013, in the Caracol Room at the Radisson Fort George Hotel in Belize City.

If you have never had the chance to see inside the Chiquibul, this is your opportunity, as there will be gliding footage of the Chiquibul on a big screen just before the start of the symposium.

Invited speakers include Chief Forest Officer Wilber Sabido, FCD Executive Director Rafael Manzanero, Belize Defence Force Commander David Jones and Retired BDF Major Lloyd Jones.

Presentations will address the need to look at the Chiquibul Forest as a national conservation priority, as well as the natural history of Belize inside the Maya forest. The agenda also makes space for reactions from key community spokespersons.

At the end of the event, participants will make a call to action.

The Office of the Prime Minister, the Belize Defence Force, the Ministry of Forestry, Fisheries & Sustainable Development, Wildlife Conservation Society, and the Belize Chamber of Commerce and Industry are among the entities being asked to participate in the 2013 Chiquibul Symposium.

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