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Fonatur clarifies 20,000 trees transplanted not felled after public backlash with announcement of route change

Playa del Carmen, Q.R. — After public backlash regarding the felling of thousands of trees, Fonatur says those trees were not felled, but transplanted. Their comment came after public backlash after the confirmation of a change in Maya Train route for Playa del Carmen.

Last week, the agency announced that the train will not run through central Playa del Carmen as originally planned, but instead, will run through suburbs. During 2021, in preparation for the upcoming train route, more than 20,000 trees were removed from the center of the federal highway between Cancun and Tulum.

While the public has said those trees were cut down, Fondo Nacional de Fomento al Turismo (Fonatur) says otherwise. In a statement, the federal agency said “they were relocated to public spaces such as avenues and parks in Playa del Carmen, Puerto Morelos and Cancun. Hoteliers from the area participated. The work of the Mayan Train has a clear and complete commitment to the environment.”

Fonatur said that “in the median of the Cancun-Tulum federal highway 307 there was no felling, but rather rescue and transplant of trees, which were relocated to public spaces.

Many of the approximately 20,000 trees were rescued and transplanted by hoteliers in the area. These are species such as macuili, ceiba, siricote, cedar and palms,” they added.

“The work of the Mayan Train will mean development for the country and justice for the southeast, but always with a clear and complete commitment to the environment,” the agency said.