Baleia State Park

The Baleia State Park (Portuguese: Parque Estadual da Baleia) is a state park in the state of Minas Gerais, Brazil. It protects a rugged area in the cerrado biome near the state capital of Belo Horizonte. As of 2014 nothing had been done to implement the park, which existed only on paper.

Baleia State Park
Parque Estadual da Baleia

Nearest city Belo Horizonte,Minas Gerais
Coordinates

19°55′43″S43°53′40″W

Area 102 ha (250 acres)
Designation State park
Created 6 July 1988
Administrator IEF: Instituto Estadual de Florestas

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The Baleia State Park is in the city of Belo Horizonte, Minas Gerais. It has an area of 102 hectares (250 acres).[1] The park is in the Taquaril neighborhood of the city.[2] It is at the foot of the Serra do Curral, about 10 kilometres (6.2 mi) from the city center.[3] The area has six springs that supply the population of the Serra neighborhood in Belo Horizonte.[1]

A Botanical Garden was defined in the area by decree 10.232 of 1932 with the objective of preserving the vegetation and landscape of Belo Horizonte. This would be the first conservation unit in the city and one of the first in the state and the country. However, nothing was done to implement it.[2]

The Baleia State Park was created by decree 28.162 of 6 July 1988.[1] The park was to be implemented by the city in partnership with the state.[2] As of 2010 it had not been opened to the public.[3] The park adjoins the Mata das Baleias (Baleias Forest), owned by the Hospital da Baleia. In 2010 the Hospital da Baleia said it was partnering with the private sector to support adventure tourism in the forest, and establishing partnerships with universities for research. The 2 kilometres (1.2 mi) Solidarity Trail leads from the hospital’s headquarters to the 1,400 metres (4,600 ft) Pico Belo Horizonte, also known as Antenna Peak, from which the whole city is visible. The hospital would gain revenue from tourism.[3]

In October 2014 the Public Ministry of Minas Gerais (MPMG) filed an action demanding implementation of the Baleia State Park, naming the State Forestry Institute (IEF) and the Prefecture of Belo Horizonte. The ministry said the area had been protected since 1932 but the park had never existed except on paper. There was no infrastructure, and the park suffered from fires, squatters, deforestation and water pollution. The action required creation of a consultative council for the park and demanded appointment within 30 days of a manager and four park rangers, with vehicles and necessary equipment.[4]

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