Posted May 21, 2003

Fires have destroyed over one thousand acres of forest and pasture near Tenosique, Mexico, as reported today by Tabasco Hoy.

At least sixteen villages in the Tenosique district are in extreme danger of being destroyed, including Redención del Campesino, which is only a few kilometers from Alvaro Obregon, the community with the Precolumbian wooden box (see Mesoweb report).

Also impacted is the community of Boca del Cerro, site of the proposed dam on the Usumacinta river (see report).

According to the authorities, the fires in the Los Ríos zone have destroyed some 650 acres of cedar and mahogany, among other types of precious wood.

Among the affected communities are Rieles de San José, Redención del Campesino, Independencia, Colonia Icorsa, Crisoforo, Boca del Cerro, Nueva Estancia, Santo Tomas, López Mateo, Suño de Oro, Nueva Jerusalén, Francisco I. Madero, Cortazar, ejido El Faisán, Carlos Pellicer y Santa Rosa.

Efforts by public agencies and volunteer groups in the communities to control the fires have so far proven ineffectual, as horse pastures and dry trees have fed the inferno.