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Dr. Cesar Cantú Ayala
Dr. Carlos Ramírez Martínez
Members of the Academic Body
“Management and Conservation of Biodiversity” UANL
In 1939, General Lázaro Cárdenas issued the decree for the creation of the Cumbres de Monterrey National Park (PNCM), with a territorial extension of 245,000 hectares, with the main objective of regulating the extraordinary avenues produced by torrential rains and with it, preventing floods in the city of Monterrey.
On November 24, 2000, a new decree of re-delimitation of the PNCM was issued, reducing its territorial extension to 177,396 hectares; However, it continues to be the National Park with the largest land area in the country.
Twenty years after this event, the PNCM continues to provide important environmental services to the inhabitants of the state of Nuevo León, and especially to the inhabitants of the Metropolitan Area of Monterrey (AMM), for whom it constitutes the main source of drinking water supply. providing approximately 60% of the more than 13 cubic meters per second consumed in the city, in addition to helping to regulate the regional climate, filter large amounts of atmospheric pollutants, release large amounts of oxygen every year, serve as a refuge for the wildlife, as well as being an important space for recreation and leisure for society.
On the other hand, the PNCM faces different risks that threaten its permanence, one of the biggest is the loss of its territory due to the lack of application of legal instruments that avoid this situation, in addition to the constant emergence of urban developments lacking planning, which has caused the loss of about 17,000 hectares in recent years, equivalent to 10% of its current surface.
The contrast that exists between the development indicators that distinguish the state of Nuevo León, such as the economic, educational, health and human development indicators, stand out as one of the most avant-garde states in the country, with the lack of effective protection of the Natural Capital that it owns, which allows guaranteeing the conservation of this important natural space that the people of Nuevo Leon have, despite the fact that the State has a large number of experts in natural resource management who have proposed various strategies to protect the territorial integrity of PNCM, and the enormous biodiversity that inhabits it.
At the time of publication of this document, the PNCM Management Program is in the public consultation stage, which means that in the coming months it will be possible to have a legal instrument to strengthen the efforts being made to achieve its conservation; However, it would still be necessary to reinforce the structure and functioning of the work team of the National Commission of Protected Natural Areas, in charge of the care of this National Park, since if not, the Management Program may face various obstacles that allow it fulfill the objectives for which it was created.
One of the most important lessons that the current global crisis caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, whose origin is zoonotic, has left us is the need to review the way in which we relate to nature, and the urgency of Society demands that governments allocate greater resources for the care of nature, and improve regulations for the use of natural resources.
The conservation of the PNCM is a subject of strategic importance for the inhabitants of the AMM, due to the multiple benefits that this natural area offers them, in addition to the fact that it is estimated that the direct and indirect benefits that ecosystems provide to society represent, at the level globally, an annual average of $ 804 per hectare. In the case of Mexico, it is estimated that for every peso that public institutions invest in the care of protected natural areas, approximately $ 52 pesos are recovered through the environmental services they provide.
For all of the above, it is urgent that the Monterrey society recognize that its quality of life depends, to a large extent, on the conservation of the PNCM, and support public institutions to carry out actions and projects that allow conserving this important natural heritage as a source. essential of well-being for the local and planetary society.