Tourism October 17, 2016 | 9:36 am

Amid predation, entity protects ‘Mother of the Waters’

Constanza, Dominican Republic.- In the heartof Valle Nuevo, where the "Mother of the Waters" gives birth toseveral major rivers, the Moscoso Puello Foundation occupies a rustic retreat atLa Cañada de la Zanja.

The report by outlet comesamid growing tension after the Environment Ministry issued a 120-day tofarmers, squatters and illegal lumberjacks to abandon the protected area.

The Foundation’s headquarters in the CordilleraCentral sits among one of the areas which produces the most water in the entireCaribbean, including Nizao River, which power the Jigüey-Aguacate and Valdesia dams,and supplies the Santo Domingo Aqueduct and the Cabral Canal.

In a statement the Moscoso Puello Foundation citesits historical relationship with Valle Nuevo since the 1980s, when there were veryfew national parks. "To obtain legal ownership of 63 hectares, statutes werepainstakingly drafted, legal requirements completed, voluntary collaborators wererecruited in the country and abroad, funds raised and education was provided inthe conservation of protected areas."

the Foundation said it acquired Cañada de laZanja to preserve it as a key environmental asset in perpetuity, and from theredocument Valley Nuevo’s socioeconomic importance, biodiversity andenvironmental services and its associated ecosystems, assigning tit the environmentallyprotected status.

It adds that over the years the reserve namedafter famed botanist and conservationist Dr. Rafael Moscoso Puello attractssome of the most prominent scientists and local and foreign conservationists,who along with technicians and students collaborated in its major project: thedeclaration of Valle Nuevo National Park, "an exercise that are involveddozens of institutions and hundreds of collaborators.

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