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Seaweed build up damaging tourism

ÄÞìïò ÃåñïóêÞðïõ Öýêéá
The beach in Yeroskipou

Paphos beaches are facing a huge problem of seaweed accumulation, Yeroskipou Mayor Kyriakos Hadjivasilis said on Monday.

A solution for a place to deposit the seaweed, which is removed, must be found soon, the mayor told the Cyprus News Agency.

Every year the local authorities have to look for a place to dump the seaweed, a process that entails increased costs, Hadjivasilis said, while the actual cost of removing seaweed from the beaches is already substantial.

Despite the fact that seaweed is not rubbish, the huge volumes of seaweed are bad for tourism, the mayor claimed.

The municipality has meanwhile found temporary solutions with private individuals who have a use for the seaweed, however, these solutions cannot permanently solve the problem, the mayor said.

Local authorities cooperate with hotel owners to clear up the seaweed in ongoing efforts but there has been no proper study commissioned by the state on the matter, the mayor complained.

“Unfortunately, the local authorities cannot solve the problem by themselves while year after year, the amount of seaweed increases,” Hadjivasilis said.

Studies in the past and recently in the marine area off Yeroskipou and the Paphos coast in general have confirmed several acres of Posidonia oceanica meadows and it is a natural occurrence for large quantities to wash up on some beaches, especially following storms.

Hadjivasilis said the municipalities had sent many letters to both the ministry of agriculture and the environment department to identify a specific location for the seaweed to be dumped to no avail.

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