Professor Galopim de Carvalho proposes a new battle for Carenque

It is urgently necessary to halt the ongoing degradation and destruction of the slab that contains the footprints

At the moment, we are living in a period in which we have other, much more pressing needs (health, economy…), so it is not opportune to insist on the implementation of the project to build the Pego Longo Museum and Interpretation Center (Carenque ), attached to the deposit with dinosaur footprints, from the former Santa Luzia quarry, approved by the Sintrense municipality in 2001, therefore, almost twenty years ago.

But, for now, it is urgently necessary to halt the ongoing degradation and destruction of the slab that contains the footprints, effectively protecting what remains of the deposit, waiting for better days, when the completion of the said Museum and Interpretation Center.

But it is also necessary to denounce a crime against an important natural heritage, officially classified as a Natural Monument, in 1897 (Decree nº 19/97, of 5 May), at my proposal, as director of the National Museum of Natural History.

And this crime is the total abandonment of this heritage, over these almost twenty years, by those who are responsible, by law, for protecting it, despite the many insistences that were made, either directly and personally, or through communication Social.

Article 7 of the same Decree states that the Institute for the Conservation of Nature “and Forests” and the Municipality of Sintra are responsible for inspecting and, therefore, protecting this Natural Monument

The truth is that, in these almost 20 years, spent around 8 million euros (in the opening of the two CREL tunnels), the deposit has been transformed into an authentic dump, where shrub and arboreal vegetation grows freely, destroying the thin slab that contains the footprints.

By the way, Dr. Varela de Matos wrote:

“A group of lawyers accepted Professor Galopim's challenge and got down to work… Could they have been sitting on the sofa putting up likes, writing indignant posts and postcards? They could! But they are of another temperament… could they spend the day on instagram posting pictures of them and their ugly faces? They could! Pro Bono!

Dino Barbosa, Katerine Ilechko, Ana Rita Henriques, Leonor Belo, José Manuel Fernandes, Laura Andrés, Soraia Cunha and Varela de Matos. Several professors, academics and artists joined, requesting, together with the professor, the providence, to safeguard the deposit from abandonment almost 20 years ago and turned into a dump...

Let's wait for the next developments in this civic battle”.


Author AM Galopim de Carvalho
Science in the Regional Press – Ciência Viva