Las Salinas & Laguna Cabral (República Dominicana)

Las Salinas, Barahona, Dominican Republic

Certified Silver through 2022

Project Name
Project Type
Restauración y Conservación del Bosque Seco del Corredor Biológico La Florida-Las Salinas
Conservación de la iguana rinoceronte (Cyclura cornuta) y la iguana de Ricord (Cyclura ricordii)
Reptiles & Amphibians
Campaña de orgullo sobre las iguanas de las rocas en la region Enriquillo
Awareness & Community Engagement
About the Program

The Las Salinas CEMEX quarry installation is found along the northern edge of the Barahona province in the Dominican Republic. It lies in the eastern end of a biological corridor known as the Corredor Biológico La Florida-Las Salinas, which connects a nearby wildlife refuge, national parks, as well as the UNESCO-designated Jaragua-Bahoruco-Enriquillo Biosphere Reserve. Although the region encompasses a variety of habitat types, the dry forest ecosystem is the focus of most of the program’s conservation efforts, particularly in two sites, Las Salinas and La Florida.  A wetland habitat at Laguna Cabral is also targeted for monitoring and protection. CEMEX, together with its partners, most notably Grupo Jaragua, a local conservation non-profit, have created a program that has multiple objectives, including restoration of the dry forest, conservation of two endangered species of iguana, protecting the Laguna Cabral wetland habitat, and capacity-building and awareness-raising in the community in a manner that generates support for conservation, and that also fosters participatory conservation. 

Practices and Impacts 
  • The forest project has expanded into a landscape-wide effort that targets the native dry forest for reforestation efforts. Native plant species are selected based on their utility as food items for two endangered iguana species. Since 2017, 55.4 acres have been restored in the Las Salinas, and 1324.5 acres in the La Florida sections of the corridor. Opportunities to assist in this project’s monitoring efforts provide alternative sources of income for locals.
  • Two endemic endangered species, the rhinoceros iguana, and Ricord’s iguana, are the focus of this program’s reptile project. The habitat is actively patrolled for threats such as poaching and habitat threats such as charcoal kilns. The presence of the iguanas is used as an indicator of success of the forest project’s reforestation efforts, and in turn, those efforts support the survival of these two species by providing foraging, shelter, and nesting structure. 
  • The awareness and outreach efforts of this program complement every other project because public support for conservation actions is essential to their success. Support arises from workshops that foster a positive public perception of the iguana, increase knowledge about the species and the importance of their survival through conservation efforts. Annually, this educational project reaches over 1000 elementary students and teachers in local communities.