Letter to Club Med

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Letter to Club Med
Moroccan Tourism
Moroccan Tourism and Other Responses
Bald Ibis

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p>English Text

Deutsche Text

The letter below is being sent personally to the Director of Club Med on behalf of the Proact Team. Should anyone else wish to send a copy individually, please feel free to use or amend the text.

For the record please let me know at:

Thank you!

David Conlin

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English Text

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M. Phillipe Bourguignon
President du Directoire
Club Mediterranee
11 rue de Cambrai
75019 Paris Cedex 19
France

19 July 2001

Dear Monsieur Bourguignon,

We are bewildered and dismayed to learn that your company, the Club Mediterranee, plans to build a new, 8000 bed, 260 hectare holiday resort in Tifnit, Morocco, immediately adjacent to the last remaining worldwide colony of the Bald Ibis - and intruding on its feeding grounds in the Souss-Massa National Park. This colony of 65 breeding pairs (2001) is a significant and irreplaceable part of the Moroccan, and planetary, natural heritage.

We ask you urgently to reconsider this decision and review the environmentally less damaging alternatives.

You are surely aware that the Moroccan ornithological society GOMAC (Groupe d'ornithologie du Maroc), together with national and international scientists, have campaigned tirelessly for the protection of this extremely rare species, which has become a prestigious symbol of Moroccan avifauna. Recent field studies in the National Park, under the aegis of BirdLife International, showed an encouraging rise in Bald Ibis numbers; finally halting the previous catastrophic decline in this species, both in Morocco and at world level. This is a cause for congratulation; but also for consolidation. Such successes are rare and should not be lightly discarded.

While appreciating that your business concerns are foremost in your plans, and understanding the importance of tourism to the Moroccan economy, it is nevertheless incomprehensible that the massive environmental impact of this Club Mediterranee project does not appear to be given the consideration it merits. The Bald Ibis colony at Tifnit is an exceptional and valuable natural asset. Once destroyed it can never be replaced. Indeed, with the continuous increase in green tourism, the almost unique status of the colony could become a not inconsiderable economic factor for the country and could be incorporated in your future projects. On the other hand, the destruction of this site and its unique occupants would generate negative and unwelcome environmental publicity for Morocco and your company.

We, the undersigned, support the GOMAC initiative against the uncritical acceptance of this project. We understand that various impact assessment analyses corroborate their grounds for concern; and that studies of alternative locations for the resort, not far from the National Park site, endorse the argument that they would be considerably less detrimental to the feeding habitats and thereby the survival - of the Bald Ibis. We ask you therefore to think again.


With your love of sailing we are sure that you are far from impervious to the beauty and variety of nature. It will not have escaped you that even the oceans are now threatened by human despoliation of our planet. As father of two sons you will surely share our interest to pass on a planet as naturally intact as possible to succeeding generations. As director of a major international company with considerable interests in North Africa and the Mediterranean Littoral, we urge you to accept part of the responsibility for the survival of this threatened bird species; and use your influence to prevent irreversible damage to the natural environment.


In the hope of a favourable outcome and intervention on your part we remain,


Yours faithfully,

David Conlin

and concerned Eurobirders, ornithologists and others, representing the following countries:

Austria, Australia, Belgium, Canada, Cyprus, Denmark, England, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Italy, Malta, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Russia, Scotland, Slovakia, South Africa, Sweden, Switzerland, United States of America, Wales

(Proact Team - currently 104 signatures - 20.07.2001)



M. Phillipe Bourguignon
President du Directoire
Club Mediterranee
11 rue de Cambrai
75019 Paris Cedex 19
France

19 July 2001

Dear Monsieur Bourguignon,

We are bewildered and dismayed to learn that your company, the Club Mediterranee, plans to build a new, 8000 bed, 260 hectare holiday resort in Tifnit, Morocco, immediately adjacent to the last remaining worldwide colony of the Bald Ibis - and intruding on its feeding grounds in the Souss-Massa National Park. This colony of 65 breeding pairs (2001) is a significant and irreplaceable part of the Moroccan, and planetary, natural heritage.

We ask you urgently to reconsider this decision and review the environmentally less damaging alternatives.

You are surely aware that the Moroccan ornithological society GOMAC (Groupe d'ornithologie du Maroc), together with national and international scientists, have campaigned tirelessly for the protection of this extremely rare species, which has become a prestigious symbol of Moroccan avifauna. Recent field studies in the National Park, under the aegis of BirdLife International, showed an encouraging rise in Bald Ibis numbers; finally halting the previous catastrophic decline in this species, both in Morocco and at world level. This is a cause for congratulation; but also for consolidation. Such successes are rare and should not be lightly discarded.

While appreciating that your business concerns are foremost in your plans, and understanding the importance of tourism to the Moroccan economy, it is nevertheless incomprehensible that the massive environmental impact of this Club Mediterranee project does not appear to be given the consideration it merits. The Bald Ibis colony at Tifnit is an exceptional and valuable natural asset. Once destroyed it can never be replaced. Indeed, with the continuous increase in green tourism, the almost unique status of the colony could become a not inconsiderable economic factor for the country and could be incorporated in your future projects. On the other hand, the destruction of this site and its unique occupants would generate negative and unwelcome environmental publicity for Morocco and your company.

We, the undersigned, support the GOMAC initiative against the uncritical acceptance of this project. We understand that various impact assessment analyses corroborate their grounds for concern; and that studies of alternative locations for the resort, not far from the National Park site, endorse the argument that they would be considerably less detrimental to the feeding habitats and thereby the survival - of the Bald Ibis. We ask you therefore to think again.


With your love of sailing we are sure that you are far from impervious to the beauty and variety of nature. It will not have escaped you that even the oceans are now threatened by human despoliation of our planet. As father of two sons you will surely share our interest to pass on a planet as naturally intact as possible to succeeding generations. As director of a major international company with considerable interests in North Africa and the Mediterranean Littoral, we urge you to accept part of the responsibility for the survival of this threatened bird species; and use your influence to prevent irreversible damage to the natural environment.


In the hope of a favourable outcome and intervention on your part we remain,


Yours faithfully,

David Conlin

and concerned Eurobirders, ornithologists and others, representing the following countries:

Austria, Australia, Belgium, Canada, Cyprus, Denmark, England, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Italy, Malta, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Russia, Scotland, Slovakia, South Africa, Sweden, Switzerland, United States of America, Wales

(Proact Team - currently 104 signatures - 20.07.2001)



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Proact/Birding in Europe David Conlin 2001