Sustainable environment under threat in Lagoa

Dear Editor

This month Lagoa Council marked International Wetlands Day with a week-long programme of information about the importance of wetlands for the global environment.

Meanwhile, the council has approved plans to destroy 11 hectares of valuable wetland in Lagoa and replace it with an industrial park.

Mayor of Lagoa, Luís Encarnação, believes that the wetland at Alagoas Brancas contains nothing of value despite the findings of a 2019 study by experts from Lisbon and the University of the Algarve which calls for protection of this valuable wetland.

Encarnação and his fellow councillors are determined to ignore public outrage and allow construction to go ahead at Alagoas Brancas despite the site’s obvious environmental value. The officials have not been transparent about the site’s true value, or the increased flood risk, or the threat of collapse of the substructure due to construction.

The mayor warns of dire financial consequences if the project is blocked but has failed to say if the council has sought funding to help protect the wetland. While Lagoa Council aims to make Lagoa a beacon of environmental sustainability in Portugal, council leaders are deliberately facilitating the destruction of the very wetland which gave the city of Lagoa its name.

The council’s “wetland week” was simply a political charade to hide a serious environmental crime.

Geoffrey Blofeld