Inhabitants of General Cepeda, Coahuila, EPN require work to curb toxic waste
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The proposed installation of Integral Center for the Management and Use of Industrial Waste (CIMARI) was released in October last year. The work is built on a site of 500 hectares in the suburbs of Wheel of Sabina, in the municipality of General Cepeda.
Wheel of Sabina is a community of about 100 inhabitants, dedicated to carving lechuguilla, extracting Candelilla wax and collecting oregano, considered species will be threatened with the project.
According to the landowners, both the company and the federal, state and municipal authorities have acted with deception to manage the project.
In 2011, company representatives offered the landowners who would install a maquiladora of clothes or a chicken farm to generate them jobs, they required that they sell a right of way through the federal highway 40 that unites Saltillo Torreon to which agreed.
"With this promise of work at the poultry farm were sold the land to the gap, which incidentally sold them very cheap, two thousand dollars an acre. People were excited because they were getting chamba "said Jose Luis Garcia Valero, a resident of the community of Wheel of Sabina citizen and member of the Supervisory Committee of General Cepeda.
But the community was unaware that the land would be used to create a toxic waste landfill.
HOWEVER In an interview, the legal representative of the company, hippy Javier Domínguez, rejected these claims and said that confinement is toxic wastes are pretreated.
"I represent the company and have been close to the community, they know that I am a person who dedicate myself to the environment, because I am part of a group that already has 20 years in the market, and since they began talks with people, I talked to every one of them that I devoted to the environment and bringing a project environment, we had opportunity to create jobs and that we could support other activities to generate economy in the population, "said Calderon.
However, residents insist that the process for the construction did "in the shadows" because since early March last year, the company began the process in the Ministry of Environment and Natural Resources (Semarnat), without anyone the community or the municipal seat had news of it.
The environmental law states that to perform a work such as confinement is necessary to promote a public consultation to this end, the project summary should be published in a newspaper of wide circulation so that people become aware of the issue, which is not Noria occurred in the Sabina.
"They did the publication on an inside page of a local newspaper, El Heraldo de Saltillo, and thereby fulfilled the law, but did not meet the spirit of this, which is to present its project to the population," explained Garcia Valero .
For when the community was learned that this project was already given permission, the October 18, 2014 the General Directorate of Environmental Impact and Risk of SEMARNAT granted authorization in environmental impact, but still two permissions: Municipal approval to change the use of forest land and the council granted a building permit.
Ejidatarios show that in November last year heard permit through the Internet and from that time reported and mobilized to stop the work. They created the Citizen Oversight Committee, through which perform demonstrations and held ejido assemblies where collected signatures to protest the plan that they say would hurt at least 40 suburbs of the town.
"People know that this building is going to go slowly killing," said Jose Luis Villareal Trevino, a resident of General Cepeda.
However, the council turned a deaf ear to the demands of the inhabitants and the second license granted to the company.
On 16 June, during the last council session in which he was not present the Councillor Madeleine Sophie Ochoa Mendoza, one of the main opponents of the project, approved under "fast track" the project for the containment of hazardous waste.
Also accuse settlers, the issue of industrial waste landfill was not included in the agenda, but that it was the end of the session as part of the general affairs and as if it were a minor matter.
The draft submitted by Ecological Society North Mexican subsidiary Ecolimpio Group, notes that there are no towns within a radius of 30 kilometers around. However, in the interim the suburbs of La Rosa are located, Tanque San Vicente Hipolito and just 5 kilometers Wheel of Sabina, relates a story published by the newspaper Vanguardia.
The concern of the people of General Cepeda for the realization of this work increases as the days pass, especially since Mayor Rodolfo Rodríguez Zamora has openly expressed his support for the project.
"We suffer in General Cepeda an old chiefdom, this gentleman Rodolfo Zamora Mayor Rodriguez was already several years ago, his son got so out, got his wife was councilor in the previous administration and he was reelected. Has the support of Governor Ruben Moreira, "said Jose Luis Garcia.
The people agree that the Mayor is committed to the project, who knew of permits and hid the people.
"The Mayor is intimidating the people, the authorities tell them they are going to take government aid they receive, have not reported for fear," said José Luis Villareal.
The first time was Rodolfo Rodriguez Zamora General Cepeda Mayor promised to deliver the aquifer "Water Shed" which caters to all the communities of the municipality, to Saltillo industrial zone, also wanted to put a landfill in another village called San Jose de la Paila, this was in 1998, but the ejidatarios opposed.
Now, Mexican Ecological Society North is one step to realize the construction of the landfill, only need a permit: the building granted by the Cabildo.
Although the community ensures that the council is intimidated by the "cacique" Mayor and fear that eventually permission for confinement is granted, will continue their struggle peacefully through marches, meetings, broadcast media and the legally.
"We are people of order, we will conduct demonstrations to disseminate information, we want to hear our position in the media, all actions always within the law, in a peaceful way," forward Jose Luis Garcia.
"We request the President Peña Nieto and Semarnat to cancel the project. We do not want a social conflict, we are not against CIMARI, do so, but in another place ", stated José Luis Villareal.
The company Mexicana North Ecological Society, which plans to start construction within a month of confinement, said open to the views of the people, but says he will continue with the project.
"I am open to any person for ampliarles information, and if they have any legal action, are the appropriate bodies to do so, it is their right, as I continue with my project," said the legal representative of the company, Javier Dominguez Calderon.
In Mexico there are only two landfills, one in Mina, Nuevo Leon and another in Ramos Arizpe, Coahuila, if the Council of General Cepeda latter gives permission Mexican Ecological Society North, the third country would be built in the community of Noria of Sabina, 100 kilometers away from the other two.