While the Cordero family lays everything on the line to protect the landscape and prevent contamination of water in the catchment area of the Sierra de Laguna, the Tres Santos (MIRA) development group positions its corporate cup at the aquifer terminus to capture that supply.
The issue is water rights. The pueblo of Todos Santos (Pop. 6,500) is already rationing water and cannot support a sister city of almost twice its size.
The development is dismantling the landscape, mining the local work force, interrupting traditional lifestyles, and will eventually disrupt the marine ecosystem. But the primary concern is water. Without water Tres Santos can't achieve its goal and the project evaporates.
The water may inevitably become the property of the development but ethically it will never belong to them. All this shifting of the landscape, wealth and water rights is made more abhorrent by the Tres Santos marketing machine which co-opts the language of conscience and consciousness using words such as sustainable, farm to table and mindful. The irony is the developers are fully conscious of their actions but less mindful of the consequences. Tres Santos has used its word currency to harvest the souls of people, convincing an economically disadvantaged population to exchange short term gains for long term losses.
I spend a lot of time in a barrio of predominantly pescadero (fishing) families. It is one of the poorer barrios in the pueblo. About two years ago while the economy was still lagging I noticed things looking up in the barrio - new trucks, fresh paint on the fronts of houses, extra strings of Christmas lights hanging from the eves. I was happy to see neighbors doing well. But after viewing the Truth Santos video and learning there had been a payout to fishermen I began to understood why.
I've been hesitant to jump into the fray, preferring to wait for the facts, remaining cautious in my judgments. Past experience has proved most of these planned developments never materialize and I'm not against development for the sake of being against it. If the people of Todos Santos believe this is in their best long-term interest I'm not about to participate in a NIMBY stampede. I tried to remain neutral, open, objective. I might not like what was happening but if progress was inevitable I wanted this project to be a shining example of when things are done right.
Sadly the evidence is otherwise and the reality of insufficient water resulting in a community disaster, is the only inevitability.
The following website is a grass roots effort to speak truth to power and an attempt to expose the misinformation disseminated by the slick marketing package of the Tres Santos machine. The site does a good job of identifying the issues and explaining the complexities of what is taking place. Kudos to Truth Santos.
The Fisherman Speak
The video below high-lights the significance of the "mindful" development just beginning in Todos Santos.
Los Cabos, forty-five miles south of Todos Santos is predictive of what Todos Santos can expect if development is not checked. A super highway has been constructed to by-pass Los Cabos from the San Jose international airport on the Sea of Cortez coastline to the Pacific coast. The only reason for this road is to open up the Pacific coast line between Los Cabos and Todos Santos. The Tres Santos development of Todos Santos will be the poster child for "sustainable" tourism. But the model for "sustainability" is flawed and the developers know it.