Cancun Ready To Keep Seaweed Sargassum Out Of Popular Beaches
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  • Post published:18/02/2022
  • Post last modified:18/02/2022

Cancun is ready to keep its popular beaches free of seaweed sargassum this coming season, stated local authorities.

The Federal Maritime Terrestrial Zone (ZOFEMAT) will be responsible for extracting the seaweed as well as sieving sandy areas to preserve beaches appealing to all tourists.

“So far this year, the beaches of the Municipality of Benito Juárez (where Cancun is located) have not presented an atypical arrival. However, we know that the season is approaching so we work daily through beach cleaning brigades from Municipal Public Services,” ZOFEMAT said.

NASA is not that convinced. Yes, NASA. According to the University of South Florida and the National Aeronautics and Space Administration, the seaweed slick in the Atlantic Ocean and the Caribbean Sea tripled its size in January alone.

The amount of sargassum in the water grew from 1.7 to 4 million tons, according to the monthly bulletin.

Based on previous behavior patterns, a portion of this seaweed invasion will land on the Quintana Roo coastlines in the coming months due to marine currents, according to both institutions.

cancun hotel zone

Nevertheless, Cancun is ready to face this threat. Navy Admiral Alejandro Lopez Zenteno, who is in charge of the “Strategy for the Attention of Sargassum,” stated that authorities have been preparing to fight this invasive plant since the end of the latest season.

“Since last November, at the close of the 2021 season, all equipment and tools have undergone maintenance,” Lopez said.

“The coastal boats were concentrated in the Chetumal operations center, the sargassum ship “Natans” was transferred to the Coatzacoalcos shipyard, and the booms were subjected to washing, change of hardware, review of the skirts, among other works.” 

The longer the sargassum decomposes on the beach, the worse the stench gets and the murky and brown the waters become.

Aside from the unpleasant landscape, authorities are concerned about beachgoers (especially children) getting their feet tangled, which raises the risk of drowning, though such incidents are extremely infrequent.

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