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Nada to Huge Resort at Cabo Pulmo

Cabo Pulmo has been saved from a massive resort development…for now.

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Cabo Cortes, a condo/hotel project in the East Cape area of Baja that was to rival Cancun in size, has been cancelled by outgoing Mexican President Felipe Calderón, reported Tim Johnson, Mexico City bureau chief for the McClatchy newspaper group. The project was to be adjacent to Cabo Pulmo, which is described as the largest and northernmost coral reef system in Mexico.

Latitude readers may remember that about 15 years ago the Mexican families who lived around Cabo Pulmo were so shocked by the devastation caused by overfishing that they took it upon themselves to institute and enforce a no-fishing policy at Cabo Pulmo. The result has been described by scientists from Scripps Institute as one of the great sea life comebacks anywhere in the world. The Cabo Pulmo marine environment is now thriving. As you might expect, these families fought hard against the proposed development.

However, Johnson writes, the biggest reason the projected was suspended is the European financial crisis. He reports that Hansa Baja Developments, a Spanish developer, is deep in debt to Spanish banks, one of which has been taken over by the Spanish government. As you might expect, Spain currently has higher financial priorities than developing resorts in the new world.

While Greenpeace Mexico is happy that the project is going nowhere, they believe that the project may have only gotten as far as it did because of payoffs. Greenpeace has demanded that the functionaries who twice approved the project be punished.

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