Playa del Carmen, Q.R. — An ancient Cieba tree has been felled without permission in the city’s center to make way for a new casino.
Developers for the Tequila Barrel Casino have destroyed an 18-meter, 100-year-old Cieba without a permit. The tree was located along Fifth Avenue in a lot that is being redeveloped for their casino.
Orquídea Trejo Buendía, Environment Directorate, said that the tree, which was about 100 years old, was felled without being subjected to an environmental process.
However the Tequila Barrel tells Riviera Maya News, “We tried several times to move the tree, but the tree’s roots were too big and to deep to move it, without seriously damaging the In Fashion hotel.
“Yes we will be planing new trees in another location to balance the energy of taking down this beautiful tree.”
But Orquídea Trejo Buendía says “They did not have permission. They will be sanctioned, but with that nothing is accomplished. The tree measured more than 18 meters and we estimate that it was more than 100 years old. The benefits and what it provided to this area of the center we have lost and no amount of fine will have it returned.”
Guadalupe de la Rosa, member of the environmental association Moce Yax Cuxtal, says that this is an example that there is no control or care of the species of trees, especially when it comes to protecting them during construction projects.
She said that given the apathy of the municipal authorities responsible for protecting the environment, there are certain entrepreneurs who put the value of money above everything else. It is a common practice to ask for forgiveness instead of asking for permission.
She added that Playa del Carmen is not aimed at a sustainable development that is integrated with nature, but which on the contrary, is responsible for destroying it.
This Ceiba, which is an ancient Maya tree, was located on Fifth Avenue between 10 and 12 North streets in the colony Centro. Due to its age, it was considered a grandfather tree.