The environmental impact of illegal mooring
Last Tuesday morning, a man was reported by the local police in San Javier (Murcia) trying to drop a 60-80 kg concrete residue into the waters of the Mar Menor. These types of actions are, in most cases, linked to the illegal anchoring of boats, usually for private use but sometimes also to obtain benefits with the creation of illegal buoy camps.
It should be noted that the seabed is part of the public domain, so its use must be free and public (art. 31 of Spanish law 22/1988, on Coasts) for its own uses, such as the bath, the walk, the stay, launching of boats, etc. This availability of free uses is guaranteed as long as constructions and installations are not required. Therefore, any use in which constructions or installations are required, such as the installation of a concrete dead, requires authorization and a favorable report from the Ministry for the Ecological Transition and the Demographic Challenge (MITECO) regarding the compatibility of the activity with the Marine Strategies (Law 41/2010, of December 29).
Libera Project: removal of large-scale waste on Posidonia oceanica
In addition to this, it is usual to find completely legal facilities on the Spanish coasts, located on marine phanerogams, in most cases on Posidonia oceanica meadows. Posidonia is included in Directive 92/43 / CEE on the conservation of natural habitats and wild fauna and flora, which constitutes the community legal framework for its conservation. On the other hand, Royal Decree 139/2011 of February 4, incorporates the posidonia and other marine phanerogams within the List of Wild Species in Special Protection Regime.
That is why SUBMON works for the restoration, improvement and mitigation of the environmental impact on the seagrass bed bottoms, among others. For this, we carry out projects focused on the location and extraction of large-scale waste, among which are the abandoned concrete residues. Currently, we are working on the Libera Project, promoted by SEO / BirdLife in partnership with Ecoembes, at the national level to remove large submarine residues that affect the posidonia. However, for more than 10 years we have been carrying out both ship anchoring diagnosis projects and the location and removal of concrete residues, or any type of ship anchoring abandoned throughout the Catalan coast.
The importance of Posidonia oceanica
Posidonia oceanica is a plant, of the family of marine phanerogams, endemic to the Mediterranean Sea, which forms extensive meadows that help to maintain the biodiversity of the Mediterranean and its fishing resources and protect the beach and the coastline from erosion. This marine plant creates important areas for the production of oxygen, for the breeding and refuge of many animal species. It is estimated that more than 400 plant species and 1,000 animal species inhabit the Posidonia grasslands. The meadows also function as large filter feeders, helping to keep the seawater clean and transparent. Posidonia is very sensitive to contamination, which is why it is considered a good biological indicator of the quality of coastal waters. The increased pollution on the coast has caused a considerable reduction in the grasslands.