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Beach construction site shut down after sea grass allegedly cleared

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A construction project was halted by federal environmental officials at San Crisanto, Yucatán. Photo: Profepa

San Crisanto, Yucatán — After a builder illegally leveled a 375-square-meter coastal dune ecosystem, federal authorities ordered construction halted, Profepa said Wednesday.

The Federal Attorney for Environmental Protection also said the builder lacked an environmental impact statement required by Ministry of Environment and Natural Resources.

Evidence of dune clearing was detected during  an inspection carried out by Profepa personnel in the port, which is part of the Sinanché municipality. The federal inspectors detected specimens of sea grape (Coccoloba uvifera) that were removed from the area where masonry foundations and concrete block walls were built.

The inspectors invoked Article 170 of the General Law of Ecological Equilibrium and Environmental Protection.

The coastal dune ecosystem serves as an obstacle to wind currents, prevents sand from drifting inland, helps prevent beach erosion and filters rainwater into the subsoil.

Penalties can include fines equivalent to 50 times the minimum wage.

East of Telchac, San Crisanto is beloved for its nature areas, even beyond the beach. The sleepy village has nearly 850 hectares of mangroves and over 100 animal species such as woodpeckers, white and black herons and anteaters. In 2010, the United Nations recognized the villagers for their efforts to combat poverty through the conservation of San Crisanto’s biodiversity.

Sources: Profepa, Yucatán Today

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