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Jan 21, 2015

G.O.B. Clarifies Petroleum Exploration Zones

On Tuesday we told you about OCEANA’s position on the draft Petroleum Exploration Zones and Exploration Guidelines prepared by the Geology and Petroleum Department. Today, the Ministry of Energy, Science and Technology and Public Utilities came out firing at Oceana’s statements. A release issued by the Ministry states that Oceana was not accurate in its assertions that the zonation plan and framework was shared with the N.G.O. Community on January nineteenth, 2015. The Ministry stated that this was its second attempt to get feedback from the N.G.O. community on the revised zonation plan and exploration guidelines. The release states, “In September 2014, the Geology and Petroleum Department shared the zonation plan and framework with thirteen stakeholder groups, inclusive of Belize Coalition to Save Our Natural Heritage, APAMO and other public and private sector entities.” It goes on to say that, “In response to the limited feedback and being cognizant of the national importance of the exploration and planning framework, the Ministry re-sent the draft document in January 2015 to a wider stakeholder group so as to allow greater participation and input in an effort to improve and strengthen the framework, where necessary.”  The Ministry ended off saying that it wishes to reiterate that the document shared with stakeholders is a draft document. It is for this very reason that the document was re-circulated to N.G.O.s to solicit their feedback, inputs and further recommendations by February second, 2015.

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