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STAFF REPORTER

PALMA
ECOLOGISTS in Action, an environmental watchdog currently on a nationwide tour to raise public awareness about the consequences of climate change, will be taking their message to Sant Llorenç des Cardassar and Cala Millor on Majorca this weekend.

Accompanied by their counterparts in the Balearics, the conservationist group “GOB,” the ecologists were presenting a documentary to the media yesterday as a precursor to the campaign aimed at making politicians and the general public take responsibility for their actions in confronting the very real threat to the environment from climate change. The Coastal department of the central government Ministry for the Environment has warned that if exploitation of coastal areas of the Mediterranean continues at its present unchecked rate, it will create extra pressure on an ecosystem already under pressure from climate change. Ecologists in Action explained that by the year 2050, temperature and wind pattern changes will have established a difference in sea wave directional movement around the Balearics - particularly in Ibiza and the south and east of Majorca - to such an extent that 50 metres of beach will have been lost. Apart from the erosion of the natural coastline, the impact on the tourist industry, the economic lifeblood of the Balearics, will be disastrous.

Ecologists in Action organiser, Pablo Cotarelo, said that other factors were exacerbating the threat. Higher sea temperatures and the pressure of an intensified human pressure on the coastline have resulted in the acidification of the coastal waters. Marine flora and fauna, including the Posidonia meadowgrass which stabilises the presence of sand at the water's edge, are being eroded at the rate of 3 percent per year.