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MEX | Mar 27, 2022

Mexico putting in sargassum barriers next month

/ Our Today

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Beaches from Cancun to Mahahual being threatened by sargassum

Mexican Marines stand next to sargassum removed from the sea as part of a government programme to remove the algae, in Cancún, Mexico. (Photo: File REUTERS/Paola Chiomante)

Mexico is stepping up the fight against the stinky seaweed, sargassum, which is threatening to overrun several beaches from Cancun to Mahahual.

Government officials have revealed the barriers used to stop sargassum are being installed next month.

According to the Riviera Maya News, Quintana Roo Governor Carlos Joaquin Gonzalez said that, while the sargassum has already arrived on beaches, the Secretary of the Navy said the barriers will be put in place next month.

The Secretary of the Navy has reported that it is equipped with “all the necessary infrastructure to help contain the sargassum at sea”.

Tourists walk over sand strewn with sargassum at Ballenas Beach in Cancún, Mexico. (File Photo: REUTERS/Paola Chiomante)

As for the seaweed that makes it to shore, tourist resorts have begun using rakes and wheelbarrows to remove it manually.

Quintana Roo Sargassum Monitoring Network’s Esteban Amaro said a massive patch of the seaweed was heading towards the popular Mexican tourist destinations, noting that more would follow as seawater temperatures climb and help the blooming algae reproduce.

Amaro added that the regions facing the largest influx so far were Solidaridad and Tulum, with several areas between Cancun and Puerto Morelos also recording high levels of Sargassum.

In January, tourism officials in Quintana Roo revealed the state welcomed more than 12.5 million visitors in 2021, which was around 84 per cent of the region’s pre-pandemic total.

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