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Environmental group to call for meaningful action at upcoming forum in Yucatán

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Carlos Rosado van der Gracht
Born in Mérida, Carlos Rosado van der Gracht is a Mexican/Canadian blogger, photographer and adventure expedition leader. He holds degrees in multimedia, philosophy and translation from universities in Mexico, Canada and Norway. Sign up for the Yucatán Roundup, a free newsletter, which delivers the week's top headlines every Monday.
The most problematic environmental issues facing Yucatán include deforestation, climate change, and worsening water quality. Photo: Carlos Rosado van der Gracht

The environmental collective Va por la Tierra is planning a series of events to raise awareness among Yucatán’s population on issues regarding water quality and climate change

The forum will take place from March 14 to 22 and will feature a series of workshops, lectures, and activities for children.

“It is important that people in Yucatán understand how precarious the situation is, both with regards to the health of our water reservoirs and climate change,” said Salvador Castell González, founder of Va por la Tierra. 

In recent years, several environmental organizations have raised alarms regarding the environmental challenges facing Yucatán, water quality among them. 

Despite the fact that Yucatán has no shortage of fresh water thanks to the large aquifer which runs below the Peninsula, studies show that the quality of this water is on a steep decline.

Activists point out that the reasons for this growing problem involve aging infrastructure and poor planning on behalf of the government, salinization, and industrial runoff from industries such as pig farms. 

Earlier: Yucatán Congress passes a new law to fight climate change

But there are signs that the issue is beginning to be seriously addressed. Last year Mexico’s Supreme Court orders the closure of a controversial and massive pig farm near Homún, Yucatán.

The court found that the pig farm was causing unacceptable levels of pollution and risked catastrophic damage to the region’s water supply. 

The decision comes as a major victory for several local organizations which have been lobbying against the farm owned by Producción Alimentaria Porcícola, or PAPO. 

Several organizations have also been organizing cleanup crews to extract solid waste from Yucatán’s cenotes with the aid of hundreds of volunteers. 

“We have been extremely active in cleaning up cenotes in 16 municipalities and have found a great deal of garbage including items such as discarded toys, bicycles, and even a slide,” said Sayda Rodríguez Gómez, director of Yucatán’s sustainable development office.

More information about the event organized by Va por Tierra can be found on their Facebook page.

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