The director of the Mar Menor recalls that they have proposed scientific tests and demanded support from the State to control these situations “for more than a year.”
The regional government demanded from the Secretary of State for the Environment “a
protocol to deal with a possible episode of anoxia in the Mar Menor“And required it to, by virtue of its powers,” carry out the actions it deems necessary to alleviate the damage that this new episode may cause to the ecosystem. ” In this regard, the Community makes available to you all the data monitored and collected to date that may be required for the development and implementation of the aforementioned actions.
This was stated this Thursday by the general director of Mar Menor, Miriam Pérez, who recalled that in October 2019 a
report on a pilot test of oxygenation through bubbles, to carry it out at the San Pedro del Pinatar Sports Port, to which the Ministry’s reference center “responded with such a number of obstacles and the request for so many reports that it was unfeasible to carry it out.”
In view of the fish mortality episode in recent days, the Polytechnic University of Cartagena and the services of the Ministry of Water, Agriculture, Livestock, Fisheries and Environment have carried out extraordinary campaigns, and have detected
certain areas with little oxygen. Faced with this situation, «we ask the Secretary of State for the Environment and, ultimately, the Government of Spain, to tell us what can be tested or what can be done if a new episode of anoxia occurs, so that we can find ourselves again before a refusal to projects proposed by the Autonomous Community that can help to minimize damage to the ecosystem “, explained the general director of Mar Menor.
«According to the technicians of the Ministry and the scientific community, the drop in oxygen values affects in a special way fish species that are more sensitive due to their growth stage (fingerlings), and causes migrations of the species towards more oxygenated areas , which added to the increase in temperatures influences their mortality as they are more exposed to solar radiation “, he highlighted.
Although the first analyzes ruled out a case of anoxia, Community sources indicated this Thursday that the data taken last week on the state of the Mar Menor did not reflect a lack of oxygen, but “as had been warned, an increase in the Temperatures, such as the one that occurred in recent days, could give rise to this lack of oxygen, as has been found in certain areas after the recorded death episode, “said Pérez.
Likewise, the Department of Chemical and Environmental Engineering of the Polytechnic University of Cartagena and the Department of Ecology and Hydrology of the University of Murcia indicate that there is no situation of stratification of the water column like the one that occurred in October 2019, although « Yes, there are areas with very little oxygen at the bottom that could have contributed to the death of fish after the great increase in temperatures ”, which went from just over 28 degrees to around 31 degrees in this area.
The Community recalls that in the different monitoring reports of the ecological status of the Mar Menor, which is carried out by the University of Murcia and which are transferred to the General Directorate of Water of the Ministry and to the Segura Hydrographic Confederation, the
prioritizing and carrying out urgent actions, since, although the loss of water quality is normal in mid-summer, the response of the ecosystem may depend on environmental conditions and the input of nutrients, warning that this year the system may have difficulties to recover and, if torrential rains occur at the end of summer, the circumstances of 2019 could be repeated.
chlorophyll shows a notable increase in concentration from July 19 to August 2, the southern basin clearly showing the clearest levels of eutrophication. “For all this, we continue to insist on the importance and urgency of a water management plan in the basin, and also regulation, not only of discharges, but also of the water table levels to reduce it, at least, between 1.5 and 2 meters, because without the execution of actions for the management and control of the water, the solution of the problem and the ecological integrity of the Mar Menor will not be possible “, concluded the general director.