Local June 27, 2016 | 8:02 am

Protesters fear hill will vanish as sand is hauled away

Moca, Dominican Republic.- Hundreds of people held Saturdaya boisterous but peaceful protest against the destruction of Los Guaconejos hillin the Northern Mountains, where ancient trees have been leveled to extractsand.

The community group Mountain Sentinels headed the demonstrationwith the support of the Cibao Ecological Society of (SOECI) and other Espaillatprovince workers and farmers organizations.

The Sentinels said Los Guaconejos’ importance lies in itsrich biodiversity and two rivers that could disappear with the extraction ofsand, by three Dominican companies whose owners are linked to the ruling PLD party,.

The community’s protests have had little success becausebusiness interests say they have official permits.

The inhabitants fear that some small rivers and streamswill disappear in the province, also from the extraction of sand for construction,“carried out indiscriminately, without scientific criteria.”

The Environment Ministry has yet to respond, even thoughthe case has been presented to its officials in Espaillat province and the cityof Moca.

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