World

Environmentalist surveying Mexico’s Maya Train warns of damage to ancient caves

2024.02.07 10:13

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© Reuters. Activists from the group Cenotes Urbanos (the Urban Cenotes) present the drillings made throughout the building of part 5 of the Mayan Train within the Aktun T’uyul System caves, in Playa del Carmen, state of Quintana Roo, Mexico February 4, 2024. REUTERS/Pao

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By Paola Chiomante

PLAYA DEL CARMEN, Mexico (Reuters) – Mexico’s Maya Train rail venture within the Yucatan Peninsula is elevating issues amongst environmental consultants about potential damage to distinctive ecosystems together with a community of subterranean caves.

One part of the 1,554-km (965-mile) rail system in Mexico’s southeast, which connects the resort city of Cancun, opened for service late final yr. The authorities has stated the remaining routes of Tren Maya, because the flagship infrastructure venture is named in Spanish, will start operating in February. But consultants have forged doubt on the timeline.

Environmentalists have lengthy raised worries in regards to the practice’s building, which cuts via some of the world’s most unusual ecosystems, together with 1000’s of subterranean caves carved by water within the area’s mushy limestone bedrock over hundreds of thousands of years.

Water knowledgeable Guillermo D’Christy fastidiously navigated on Saturday round large stalagmites and stalactites to survey the concrete and metal pilings which were put in within the fragile caves as half of the practice’s building.

“We are putting at risk a very important bio-cultural heritage for Mexico, and for humanity,” stated D’Christy.

He stated he fears that the vibrations of the development machines and trains will damage the roofs of the caves.

“This ceiling is going to gradually become thinner and thinner. It is falling. It is collapsing,” he stated.

The authorities’s environmental affect research for this half of the venture stated the danger of collapse was taken into consideration within the engineering of the tracks, and there shall be a prevention program.

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