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Archeologist: Wind farms could damage Mayan sites

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Sergio de la Cruz Naranjo examines ancient ruins, which are under constant threat. Photo: Facebook

Progreso, Yucatán — A wind farm project along the coast has an INAH archaeologist concerned about the effect it may have on archeological sites from Flamboyanes to Chicxulub Pueblo.

Sergio de la Cruz Naranjo explained that the construction process, which will overtake acres of land, could harm Mayan vestiges in its path.  

The project reportedly involves 36 turbines, each mounted on 120-meter-high steel towers. 

It is one of 16 wind farms and solar plants that 11 firms from five different countries will be building in different parts of Mexico after winning the rights at a federal government auction held in late March.

Sergio de la Cruz Naranjo. Photo: Facebook

De la Cruz Naranjo said that projects tend to expand into surrounding properties as warehouses and trucks are needed during the construction process. 

These ruins are small and often hidden, but no less precious. Archeologists are using GPS and mapping technology to create a registry for the more obscure remains of Mayan civilization. But registering the sites doesn’t protect them.

“These sites are likely to disappear, if not monitored, if not visited constantly and if not protected,” said the archaeologist.

He added that, unfortunately, looting is common in Yucatán’s unguarded archeological zones.

But what this type of research does is to give  a “green light” to more research, as well as the opportunity for civil associations to carry out actions so that these places are not destroyed.

Wind farms are being erected in Yucatán. Photo: Getty

He told Desde el Balcón that we are all called to be responsible for our archaeological heritage — not just INAH.

The wind farm park is set to churn out 90 megawatts (MW) of energy, with most of it (85 MW) to be sold to the state-run Federal Electricity Commission (CFE) and the remainder to the private sector.

“This project represents the largest investment ever by any Chinese company in Mexico’s wind energy sector,” said Rafael Valdez, Envision Energy’s director for Latin America, in China Daily.

Sources: Desde el Balcón, China Daily

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