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Apr 26, 2022

Minister Explains the Granting of Salvage Logging License to Executive Member

Orlando Habet

While answering questions from reporters in Orange Walk on Saturday, Minister of Sustainable Development, Orlando Habet was asked whether he had issued a salvage logging license to his campaign manager to operate in the Chiquibul National Park. Now the Chiquibul National Park is a protected area, but a salvage logging license is different from a logging license. Salvage logging licenses provide for the removal of trees in forest areas that have been damaged by wildfire, flood, severe wind, disease or insect infestation. This was how Minister Habet responded to the question.


Orlando Habet, Minister of Sustainable Development

“One, he’s not my campaign manager, and secondly – but he’s a member of my executive – but I don’t see the bias if somebody applied for it. We don’t have another application. When we got into office we found out that there was a fire like one and a half years before and it is customary for the Forest Department to issue salvage licenses when there’s a petition for areas in the forests that have caught fire. The reason is that they are good logs, so you don’t want them to rot or to spoil, so that is why it’s called “salvage” just to pick up what is already burnt or what is already on the ground. There are also instances where maybe a license was issued, like maybe a year before, the rainy season came and they couldn’t take it out, so it’s down there but they’ve already did the expenses and so the next year they come to ask for a salvage license to take out what is already on the ground. If it can be salvaged and used for a good purpose, then sure, before they spoil. But also to mention that it’s not the first time that this is being done. It’s been done up in the north, I think there’s an area that caught fire and a salvage license was issued. But to be truthful, nothing has been taken out because the weather hasn’t permitted and we fear that he might not be able to take them out because we have more rains now again.”

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