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Dying tree in store’s parking lot becomes a symbol

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A tree at a big-box store’s parking lot has become a symbol of Mérida deforestation. Photo: La Jornada Maya

Mérida, Yucatán — One little tree surrounded by acres of cement isn’t going without a fight.

“Do not kill me, I give oxygen,” reads a sign hanging from the tree at the entrance of the newly opened sports store Decathlón.

Workers at the big-box store, near the Chedraui Selecto and the Siglo XXI convention center on the Prolongacíon, apparently thought they could chop into the tree’s roots to plant a garden bed.

The single tree seems to have become a cause to symbolize widespread deforestation in Mérida. Protest signs were hung from the dying tree, and academics Dalila Aldana Aranda and Federico Dickinson Bannack both came to its side.

Dickinson Bannack, who is a professor in the Department of Human Ecology at Cinvestav, explained that the wounds at the tree’s roots could cause bacteria to enter the trunk of the tree, making it sick and die.

Meanwhile, Dr. Aldana Aranda highlighted the work of Prof. Dickinson, who saved several ceibas in a field near the big-box store. He regretted the actions that both the government and individuals take against green areas, since “nobody wants to live on a concrete slab,” he said.

Source: La Jornana Maya

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