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Lacandona: 50 años de depredación‏

Fecha: 
Lun, 2014-06-02

Selva Lacandona: 50 años de depredación

Iván Restrepo

En abril pasado, la maestra Julia Carabias fue retenida dos días cuando se encontraba en una estación de monitoreo de la Reserva de la Biosfera Montes Azules, en Chiapas.

Hace dos semanas, dos miembros de la organización ambientalista y cultural Na-Bolom, Beatriz Mijangos Zenteno y Enrique Roldán Páez, fueron igualmente retenidos y liberados 22 horas después.

Estos hechos han despertado la condena de ambientalistas, académicos y organizaciones que luchan por la conservación del patrimonio natural del país. Y muy especialmente por uno que lleva medio siglo sufriendo una enorme depredación: la selva Lacandona.

En 1975-76, cuatro centros de investigación formados al cobijo del Consejo Nacional de Ciencia y Tecnología (el de Recursos Bióticos, el de Ecología, el de Ciencias Ecológicas del Sureste y el de Eco­desarrollo) alertaban con datos muy precisos sobre la importancia de cuidar la riqueza que constituían las selvas tropicales arrasadas por los programas oficiales de desmonte so pretexto de resolver el problema de la tierra en otras partes del país y aumentar la producción agropecuaria. En el caso de la Lacandona, por el proceso de colonización de grupos indígenas que, expulsados de las fincas, se asentaban en ella en busca de tierras para sobrevivir.

Cuatro años antes, una decisión del presidente Luis Echeverría había adjudicado 614 mil hectáreas de selva chiapaneca a 66 familias lacandonas. Esta decisión no tuvo en cuenta a cientos de familias de otros pueblos indígenas que también habitaban ese territorio. Hubo indicios de que detrás de este reconocimiento agrario estaba el interés de la empresa paraestatal Corporación Forestal de la Selva Lacandona (Cofolasa) para explotar maderas preciosas. Era una época en que en los meses de secas el humo de la práctica agrícola de la roza-tumba-quema para preparar nuevos campos de cultivo impedía en ocasiones el aterrizaje en los aeropuertos de Tuxtla Gutiérrez y San Cristóbal de las Casas. Los gobernadores Manuel Velasco Suárez y Jorge de la Vega Domínguez apoyaron efectivamente los intentos federales para convencer a los habitantes de la selva de los daños de la citada práctica agrícola al extenderse sobre miles de hectáreas y rendir cosechas de subsistencia. Múltiples veces se dijo que el valor de la selva radicaba en su enorme biodiversidad.

Se instauraron para ello diversos programas y se decidió detener la ganadería extensiva, pero no tuvieron continuidad mientras no cesó la migración de las regiones pobres. Además, parte de las 600 mil hectáreas pasaron en 1978 a formar parte de la Reserva de la Biosfera Montes Azules. Esto agudizó el problema de la tenencia de la tierra de los nuevos pueblos, con la amenaza de su desalojo. Súmese la presencia de grupos económico-políticos interesados en apropiarse de la Lacandona y otras reservas naturales de Chiapas. O Los Chimalapas, en Oaxaca, diezmada por ganaderos y madereros del vecino estado.

Mientras surgían políticas oficiales en torno al medio ambiente y garantizar la salud de áreas naturales claves, se agudizaron los viejos problemas socioeconómicos, de desigualdad e injusticia, sin faltar las represiones contra los indígenas, como en el gobierno del general Absalón Castellanos. Todo ello dio por fruto el alzamiento zapatista de hace 20 años, que desplazó hacia dentro de Montes Azules a familias indígenas afectadas por la guerra. Y nuevos problemas en las selvas chiapaneca y oaxaqueña.

Para resolverlos se necesita que las instancias oficiales establezcan programas globales, incluyentes, que den por fruto la plena participación de los pueblos indígenas en el manejo, conservación y administración de la Reserva de la Biosfera Montes Azules y las áreas naturales protegidas que existen en ambas entidades. Lo urgente es atender los conflictos socioambientales en dichos territorios. El asesinato hace justo un mes de José Luis Solís López, base de apoyo zapatista en la junta de buen gobierno de La Realidad (poblado en el límite suroeste de Montes Azules), es un aviso de que hay que actuar ya, con sensatez, para desterrar el clima de violencia, desconfianza e inseguridad existente.