Channel of Panama

Geografía panameña. Canal de Panamá. Influencia estadounidense # Geography. Animals in danger of extinction. Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute

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  • País: Panamá Panamá
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The Channel of Panama

The interest to establish a short route from the Atlantic to the Pacific began with the explorers of Central America at the beginning of the century XVI Courteous, conquering Hernán of Mexico, suggested a channel through the isthmus of Tehuantepec; other explorers preferred routes through Nicaragua or the gulf of the Darién. The first project for a channel through the isthmus of Panama was initiated by Carlos I, who ordered the accomplishment of a topographic study of the isthmus in 1523. A project for a channel in 1529 was elaborated, but it was not presented/displayed the king. In 1534 a Spanish official suggested a route for the channel very next to which takes the present one. Later other projects were suggested but no began.

In 1905, the Commission of the istmico Channel decided to construct a channel with sluices instead of a channel to level of the sea; this project was approved by the Congress of the United States the following year. President Theodore Roosevelt ordered the construction to the Body of Engineers of the Army of the United States and W. Goethals named to colonel George to direct the project. The construction of the channel was one of the greater works of engineering of all the times. One calculated that the channel would be completed in ten years; nevertheless, in the summer of 1914 it was already in operation. The construction supposed not only the excavation of about 143 million of m3 of earth, but in addition the cleaning to all the denominated Zone of the Channel (it was infested of mosquitos that propagated the yellow fever and the malaria). The work of cleaning carried out colonel to it William C. Gorgas, of the medical body of the Army of the United States, that eradicated the diseases almost completely. A problem added and waited for in the construction was not the existence of earth slidings from the borders of the channel, mainly in the Gaillard Court. The reexcavaciones due to these slidings increased around a 25% the amount of earth that had calculated to remove. The final cost of the channel was of 336 million dollars.

In 1970 the widening of the Court Gaillard or Gaillard Cut concluded, of 91.5 ms to a width of 150 meters.

Gorgas Hospital

The medical services offered to the labor force, by the Company of the Panama Canal, were at any moment, indicated by an excellent quality. Two hospitals and a center for convalescent in the island of Taboga, were acquired between the properties bought to franceses.(May 4 of 1904), by the North Americans. All was in bad conditions and was the necessity to invest great sums of money for a remodeling, cónsona with the good practice of the Medicine. The Hospital Cove in Panama, successor of Central L'Hopital du Panama (1882), projected as a great center and had a formidable organization, but their structures or seemed to be yielding to the passage of time, because some of their 90 buildings, or happened of the 30 years of use.

It was added, also, the enormous extension of the area that occupied, that was making more and more the intercommunication tedious and difficult. The medical directors, personal technician, manual nurses and workers, agreed in constructing a new hospital, instead of continuing with the frequent remodelings. In April of 1914, a Special Committee with the intention of "investigating named and presenting/displaying recommendations for the reconstruction of the Hospital Cove, of permanent form". The members were, doctor Alfred B. Herrick, in that time Superintendent In charge of the Hospital Cove, Mr. R.E.Wood, contralor of the Channel and the architect Samuel Hitt.

The original idea of Colonel William C. Gorgas, Medical service chief of the Zone of the Channel, was to construct a totally new Hospital and in addition, in the same place, with capacity for 1200 patients, including the Asylum for Lunatic. Nevertheless, the Committee modified this number and it reduced it to 800, but without including the mental patients, for who they approved a Hospital aside. The Special Committee, also added other recommendations, such as:

1. conservation of the same site for the new construction.

2. five groups of buildings for rooms, each one with kitchen, dining room and administration.

3. organization of the ambulatory consultation. The Congress of the United States, approved in April of 1915, the sum of $ 2,000,000 for these works, that extended until April of 1919.

The Congress of the United States, approved in April of 1915, the sum of $ 2,000,000 for these works, that extended until April of 1919. Besides to count on buildings just constructed, the Hospital Cove initiated a complete renovation of the equipment, doctor-surgical and of its structure of work. The hospitable center stood out being the unique one to the south of the Grande River, with the faculty to offer doctor-surgical treatment, for any type of cases. It got to count between his personnel, with 33 doctors, of great reputation and prestige, with 81 graduated nurses, in addition to aids, technicians of different types and personnel from cleanliness.

In a moment this quality of medical attention that was offered, was being recognized, being received and being commented by the population in general and his fame extended by Center and the South America, arriving to have many patients of those places. The 24 of March of 1928, the Congress of the United States approved a Resolution Joint, that it said "As recognition by his distinguished services to the Humanity and as a form to perpetuate the name and memory of General William C. Crawford, the Hospital of the Government, up to here, known like the Hospital Cove, is known and designated, from now on, like the Gorgas Hospital".

Single it was a name change for the Hospital, because the Gorgas, still continued and improved, the excellence of the medicine in Panama and was a point of comparison with the Panamanian hospitals, between which, solely, the General Hospital of the Box of Social Insurance of Panama, (1962), was the hospitable one of our republic, which it equaled and it surpassed such category, since it had the fortune to begin with a medical body of extraordinary quality, some from which, they came from that school and they implanted similar norms of mystic and pride in the attention, dedication and consecration to the treatment of the patients, who they maintained by three quinquenniums. The Gorgas Hospital continued working until October of 1999, when, in agreement with Treaties Torrijos-Carter of the Panama Canal, it happened to Panamanian hands. By 71 years continuous east hospitable center worked, of great reputation and pleasing recordación, like light beacon of the Medicine.

Animals in Danger of Extinction

The CDC of Panama is in the DNCC and comprises of a network of Datacenters for the Conservation. At the moment 11 exists CDC´s that operates in equal number of countries of Latin America and the Caribbean. Additionally, the United States of America counts on a CDC in each state and Canada with three. The CDC use and base their operations on the methodology of the Natural Patrimony that is a system developed and refined by The Nature Conservancy during last the 15 years, in collaboration with the different CDC. This methodology uses a data base computerized denominated System of Data base and of Conservation (translated of the English Biological and Conservation Database System, BCD), in which it is compiled, it organizes and it analyzes biological information that it includes the characteristics, number, the status of protection, location and distribution of the different species from found flora and fauna in the Republic of Panama.

This information allows to identify those natural areas with high priority of conservation, as well as to establish plans of protection, maintained handling, development of ecologically stable projects, and to analyze possible environmental impacts. The information compiled and analyzed by a CDC is used by governmental agencies, national and international development banks and organizations dedicated to the conservation, in the planning of the development, protection and conservation of natural areas. Like recognition to the arduous conservacionista work of the CDC administered by the DNCC of COVE, The Nature Conservancy, conferred to him to same the "Annual Prize to the Excellence in Manejo de Scientific Informacio'n for the Conservation of the Nature", in March 1997. This prize, which it is the first time that is given to an organization outside the United States, grants the organizations who have developed exceptional activities to protect the biodiversity.

By means of law 23 of the 23 of January of 1967, and the Dir Resolution. 002-80, the protection and conservation of the Wild Fauna are dictated to measures of urgent character for. By this law certain species are protected that are in serious threat of extinction.

SMITHSONIAN TROPICAL RESEARCH INSTITUTE

In 1923 the Institute for Research in Tropical America, a group of private foundations and universities under the auspices of the National Research Council, first established a research laboratory on Barro Colorado Island, Panama Canal Zone, in order to investigate the flora and fauna of tropical America. It was called the Canal Zone Biological Area (CZBA). In 1940 an act of Congress placed the facility under control of a board composed of the heads of certain executive departments and prominent scientists. In 1946 the operation was transferred to the Smithsonian Institution and was dedicated to conducting long-term studies in tropical biology. In 1966 it was renamed the Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute (STRI), and expanded its scope by extending its research to other areas in the tropics, and by establishing a marine sciences program with laboratories on both the Atlantic and Pacific coasts of Panama. In 1974, these broader research interests were legally recognized by the Government of the Republic of Panama and were later included in the Panama Canal treaty of 1977. In 1985, the Government of Panama granted the Institute status as an International Mission in order to further facilitate its mission.

Today, research is conducted throughout the Isthmus at terrestrial and marine field stations equipped with modern laboratories and dormitory facilities. Central offices are located at the Earl S. Tupper Center in Panama City, which opened in 1990. The first directors of the Canal Zone Biological Area research station in Panama were James Zetek and Karl Koford. In 1957, Martin Moynihan began the expansion of STRI into other habitats in Panama and other tropical countries and into related fields, such as ethology and anthropology. Under the direction of Ira Rubinoff from 1973 onwards, STRI has continued to expand its work in the tropics, and now conducts research throughout Latin America, Asia and Africa.