A new initiative to enhance protection and conservation of the local environment was approved at the February 24 session of Chapala’s Consejo de Ecología (Ecology Council), a body that includes community leaders and local government officials.
The council approved a proposal submitted by Chapala Ecology Director José Jaime Ibánez to establish a government-citizen committee for the purpose of creating a Municipal Code of Territorial Planning.
Jaime pointed out that all municipal governments are obligated to operate under local territorial planning ordinances to harmonize the use of urban, agricultural and natural zones.
One topic of particular interest is appropriate conservation of El Tepalo, Ajijic’s prized area of forest land, natural waterfalls and hiking trails. There are concerns that some parts of El Tepalo are not situated within the perimeters of the state’s Area Natural Protegida (ANP) spanning the upper ranges of the north shore mountain corridor.
According to Jaime, the Chapala government could be empowered to declare the excluded zone as a municipal ANP.