Since the beginning of February, experts have warned that the arrival of invasive algaebetter known as sargassumhas been advanced three months in this season and should be the most acute year of this phenomenon, which would affect tourism in the Caribbean Mexican.
According to official data, since 2013 the problem has been getting worse and particularly affecting the coasts of Quintana Roo. One of the favorite sites of world tourism as it is home to the popular destination of cancunwhere sargassum is already wreaking havoc, although before it was exacerbated between March and April.
sargassum traffic light
For this month of March the beaches already have a large amount of algaeaccording to the daily monitoring of 80 beachesat least 10 of them have excessive levels of sargassum; another 20 have abundant levels of algae; 11 others have a moderate level of Sargassum; 34 of them have low levels of macroalgae and only 5 of these beaches do not have the presence of Sargassum on their coasts.
According to the data issued by the Sargassum traffic light, the following ranges are without algae:
– Island of Contoy
– Isla Mujeres North Beach
– Downtown Isla Mujeres Beach
– Isla Mujeres South Beach
Beaches with very low zargazo:
– The island of passion
– North of Cozumel
– San Juan Beach
– Cozumel Pier
– Chankanaab Beach
– My beach
– San Francisco Beach
– The sky
– South Point
Beaches with excess seaweed:
– Tulum Arco Maya
– Tulum ZH Sur
– Tulum Punta Piedra
– Tulum ZH North
– Ruins of Tulum
– Playa del Carmen El Recodo
– Pointe Molas
– Xhanan Beach
– Beautiful beach
– Mezcalitos Beach
A growing environmental problem
Sargassum is also known as “the weed of the Gulf” and it is a macroalgae that comes from the Atlantic “Sargasso Sea”, which is the habitat of many species, but for a decade, it atypically arrived in the Mexican Caribbean through changes in temperature and sea currents and winds.
According to data provided by the state, in 2022 a total of 54,000 tons of Sargassum was collected statewide, while in 2021 there were over 44,000 tons and in 2020 19,000 tons. have been recorded.
In January, in Cancun, 71 tonnes of Sargassum were collected Since then, four Sargassum collection points have been set up on the beaches of Cancun: Playa del Niño, Las Perlas, Delfines and Coral. In addition to being public beaches and having the distinctive blue flag, they have facilities that allow access to vehicles and specialized machinery.
Sargassum Free Months in the Caribbean
According to information provided by the National Autonomous University of Mexico (UNAM), mainly during the winter monthsJanuary, February and March practically there are no sargassum on the Mexican Caribbean coasts.
Just as spring arrives, the macroalgae begin to multiply and gradually arrive on the paradise beaches. It is in summer that they reach their highest peak and as soon as autumn enters, they decline again, if the quantity of sargassum is very large and it is not picked up in time (one to two days after arriving on a beach), begins to decompose and generate toxic gases, such as hydrogen sulfide gas and methane, and leachate containing metals, among which arsenic stands out for its dangerousness.
Melissa Galbraith is the World News reporter for Globe Live Media. She covers all the major events happening around the World. From Europe to Americas, from Asia to Antarctica, Melissa covers it all. Never miss another Major World Event by bookmarking her author page right here.
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