Today we celebrate World Environment Day all around the world. From the peaks of the Himalayas to the Great Barrier Reef, and everything in between, there are so many issues we could talk about on World Environment Day. There are so many causes to support and organizations to donate to, that it can sometimes be overwhelming. Our advice? Start local or start with a place you have an emotional attachment to.
Here in the Riviera Maya and along the Caribbean, we have seen a continual problem with beach erosion. Beach erosion has continued to spread over the years and has worsened with climate change. Climate change is the primary cause for affecting trade winds and ocean currents that lead to a loss of sand. In late 2014 and 2015, a massive amount of seaweed washed ashore and made many of the beaches unsuitable for swimming.
Another environmental issue we face is coral bleaching. Coral reefs are diverse and productive ecosystems that are essential for coastal protection, providing economic goods, and attracting tourists. Hurricanes, diseases and bleaching have taken their toll on coral reefs throughout the Caribbean in recent decades. Overfishing, pollution and rising seawater temperature prevent coral from producing offspring.
See part of the world’s second longest barrier reef, the Mesoamerican barrier reef system, during a full day tour to Sian Ka’an!
It is important to remember every day, and especially today, that each action we make has a consequence. Practicing green living can go a long way, and it can even help prevent natural phenomena like beach erosion. Here are some ways to protect the environment in Riviera Maya and around the world.
Conserve water: The less water you use, the less runoff and wastewater will pollute our oceans. Try not to let your hose run too long and turn off the sink when you’re not using the water.
Reduce pollution: Walk, bike or use public transportation. When fossil fuel emissions from cars lead to ocean warming and mass bleaching of corals, there’s no need for everyone to drive everywhere alone!
Avoid toxic lawn care: No matter how far away from the ocean you live, products used on your lawn flow into the water system, pollute the ocean, and they can harm coral reefs and marine life.
Know where your trash is going: Never use straws, as they can get stuck in sea animals. Any kind of plastic is bad because it never fully decomposes. Avoid littering the beach—trash can harm coral reefs and the fish.
Support businesses and organizations that care for the environment: Ask before you purchase.
Plant a tree: Trees reduce runoff into the ocean.
Be aware when diving or snorkeling: When diving or snorkeling never touch the reef and never anchor the boat on the reef. Look for sandy bottomsin.
Volunteer for a coral reef cleanup: When vacationing to an area with coral reefs, spend part of your time volunteering to clean up a coral reef.
You can also help protect the environment in the Riviera Maya by joining our beach clean up. On the first Sunday of every month we gather to collect trash along the beach in Playa del Carmen. Learn more about what we do and why here.
Find out more about Riviera Maya’s rich biodiversity here to see why we care so much about preserving the environment’s beauty and its wildlife.
Snorkel at two different coral reefs on our tour to Cozumel Island!
If you have any questions or concerns, please do not hesitate to write in the comment section below or send us an e-mail to: firstname.lastname@example.org.