Sargassum is back in the region

A huge tide of sargassum has once again invaded shores of the Caribbean, including some of Mexico’s most popular beaches.

But despite the magnitude of the problem, the federal government has not allocated the funding that has been requested to deal with it.

According to the Cancún sargassum monitoring network, 30 countries, territories and protectorates are forecast to receive massive amounts of sargassum, including Mexico, the United States, Cuba, Honduras, Costa Rica, Nicaragua, Guatemala, Belize, Colombia, Panama, Haiti, Puerto Rico, Dominican Republic, Jamaica and the Bahamas among others.

So far in Mexico, the beaches of the Riviera Maya in Quintana Roo have been the hardest hit, including Playa del Carmen, Tulum, Cozumel, Puerto Morelos the Sian Ka’an Biosphere Reserve, Othón P. Blanco and Bacalar.

Cancún Mayor Mara Lezama said the sargassum problem was especially serious because of how quickly the macroalgae often accumulates on beaches within just a matter of hours.

Sargassum conditions as of Tuesday morning, from low to moderate, abundant and excessive and indicated in green, yellow, orange and red.

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Sargassum Flow Expected Worse Than Last Year

According to the monthly reports of the Optical Oceanography Laboratory of the School of Marine Sciences of the University of South Florida, intended to provide an overview of the current flowering condition and the probability of future flowering of sargassum for the Caribbean Sea, the conditions for this 2019, are greater than those of last year for the uptake of these marine algae.

The Sargasso Surveillance System based on the satellite of the University of South Florida warns that 2019, will be on a larger scale, which has alerted authorities at the Caribbean countries, including Mexico.

In the report for the month of January the extension of flowering in 2019 is still significantly greater than in most of the years from 2011 to 2018 for the Caribbean and the Central West Atlantic. For this reason, they point out that this 2019 is likely to be another important flowering year and for which, the corresponding measures must be taken to address said overflow.

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