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Quintana Roo enlists the Navy in the fight against sargassum

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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.
Sargassum began to show up in Cancun once again in late April as sea temperatures began to soar. Photo: Carlos Rosado van der Gracht

Mexico’s Navy has removed over 10,000 tons of sargassum from the coastline of Quintana Roo. 

The unsightly seaweed was cleared from beaches in seven municipalities across the state.

The Navy also set up over 9,000 meters of special netting across several popular beaches, in an attempt to keep sargassum from reaching the shore. 

During the last several weeks the amount of sargassum on Quintana Roo’s coastline has increased dramatically. 

But despite the increase, sargassum levels are still nowhere near the levels seen in 2019.

Earlier: Is river pollution to blame for the explosion of sargassum growth?

That year, the problem got so bad that entering the ocean in Cancun and Playa del Carmen became difficult, not to mention smelly.

Hotel operators and tourism authorities worry that the arrival of large amounts of sargassum could further hurt the tourism industry as it continues to suffer from the fallout of the COVID-19 pandemic. Photo: Carlos Rosado van der Gracht

Several hotels have also taken to the cause of cleaning up the beach by hiring workers to clear sargassum from their shoreline. 

Sargasso is a type of brown macroalgae found in temperate and tropical oceans around the world. It typically inhabits shallow water and coral reefs. 

Scientists believe that the proliferation of sargassum over the last decade in the Caribbean and Gulf of Mexico is caused by rising sea temperatures associated with global warming.

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