SARGASSUM, HIGH RISK AND PRIORITY
Our Governor for the state Carlos Joaquin Gonzalez stated last week that sargassum has become priority number one and is today the highest risk for touristic activities above security and violence. We are all aware of the problem and possible consequences but we may not be of the scale and time approaching us. Statistics show that arrival of sargassum to our coast in 2019 will be 300% compared to 2018. Allowing this to happen could bring unimaginable consequences to the area not only in the value of our investments, our plans for the future and serious short term ecological damage.
Although the subject has been placed on priority we do not have a solution at this moment.
a) Our government authorities have received multiple proposals from different companies to put together two different operations. Gather sargassum at sea before depositing on our beaches, and transforming it into something useful. Sargassum deposited would be picked up, transported and transformed as well. This operation is not acceptable as solution because of its high cost and difficulty of operation, but mainly because the solution comes when the problem is already created.
b) Private investors through the hotel association have proposed as strategy that ¨each one of us will clean our own doorstep¨. This option places high risk in applying different solutions that may become counterproductive or affect immediate neighbors as well ecological balance in general.
c) Puerto Aventuras has proposed a practical formula to survive the time it takes for a world scale solution. Our proposal could be defined as follows:
1. – Sargassum has no precedent, it happens due to fertilizers on a grand scale both in North and South America. The ¨root¨ solution to this problem is an international campaign to regulate agriculture in general. The solution is way above our control as Riviera Maya and the Mexican Caribbean.
2. – The areas that produce sargassum are not affected by it. Our area does not contribute to its formation, but is receptor of it and is directly affected.
3. – Containing sargassum or allowing it to deposit on our beaches becomes a large scale problem that reflects on high cost, hard work and partial results.
4. – Sargassum travels north to south on the coastal current and deposits on our beaches due to northeast and southeast winds combined with high/low tides. Sargassum is very docile while drifting on the current and can be easily directed to stay within the current. The practical solution at this time is to see it go by without depositing on our beaches.
INITIATIVE AND PROPOSAL
Puerto Aventuras´ Developer took the initiative to hire Dr. Ping Wang from the University of Florida to study the effects of sargassum on our coast line, specifically on Puerto Aventuras, and present the necessary solution designs to prevent it from entering our area. The premise was to conduct sargassum away and prevent its deposit. The solution presented includes two parallel floating pipes wrapped together with a net and articulated to a vertical aluminum and plastic curtain to slide sargassum by the pressure originated from coastal current. This floating curtain will be built in sections of 10 meters length each and joined to lengths up to 270 meters. These curtains will be held in place by a steel cable fixed to a bolt anchored to the sea bottom and will include and easy- detachment lock to be easily removed in case of storm and stored inside our marinas.
The designs were presented to several companies dedicated to maritime constructions and Oceanus directed by Pablo Besquin was selected to present a budget on cost of fabrication, installation and maintenance of floating barriers. According to these budgets the cost for construction of curtains to prevent sargassum from entering Puerto Aventuras is for the amount of $378,999.90 US dollars. An additional amount of $44,500 US dollars will be considered for guarantee to remove and store in case of storm and maintenance for the first year making a total of $423,499.90 US dollars. To this total amount tax on IVA should be added for the amount of $67,759.98 US dollars for a final figure to be collected and invested of $491,259.88 US dollars. Included you will find the resume of studies made, design and budget.
Puerto Aventuras is defined as ¨Beach and Marina, Golf Resort¨ being our beach our main asset and highest value to our properties. Sargassum places a short term risk on our main attraction, demand and property values. The solution presented in this document implies an investment that should be covered by every property and owner within the Resort according to its participation within the Master Plan. Putting together this solution package should began with the money amount collected by Colonos for reposition of beach in Puerto and completed by additional amounts promoted and collected by the Association who has been in charge of collecting fees from owners and residents.
NOTE: The developer has taken the initiative to find a solution and presenting it to the community. This document is being sent to the representatives of the Board of Directors Colonos Association and the representatives of Condominiums and hotels within the Resort in the hope of finding quorum to unify efforts and accomplish this common goal for the preservation of our natural beauty as our main asset. The study, project and budget have been provided to the Colonos´ Association.
FIDEICOMISO PUERTO AVENTURAS
ARQ. ROMAN RIVERA TORRES, CEO