The following is a response to the article “Tourism is Poisoning the Mexican Caribbean” by Stephen Leahy, which originally appeared in the Global Information Network. Leahy’s article starts by explaining that the massive amount of tourism in Mexico’s Caribbean coast is causing excessive contamination to the groundwater ,and detrimental damage to the beautiful coral reefs that many tourists go to see. The primary causes of the pollution are pit latrines, septic tanks, leaking sewer lines, and golf courses, according Chris Metcalf, a researcher with the United Nations University’s Institute for Water, Environment, and Health. He continues to state how the problem is difficult to solve because of the amount of money tourists bring to the area, so environmental violations are overlooked in favor of more development.
Despite best efforts to prevent problems like this, there always seems to be some sort of issue like this going on somewhere in the world. It saddens me to know that in some places the environment is struggling, begging for help, but is quickly shot down for financial benefits, that is how this article is written out to me. I would think that the ocean would be the last area people would ignore pollution from, accounting that the ocean covers at least 70 percent of the earth overall. This article applies to just about every ocean loving vacationer out there, especially to tourists that go to the Caribbean and are not thinking about the consequences of their actions. Everyone enjoys a good trip to the tropics, I can respect that, and to most people, worrying about the environment while on vacation is likely the last thing on their minds. However it has reached a point, in this day and age, where sitting on a beach and doing nothing while coral reefs are shamelessly destroyed should seldom be an option. With all that said, this article was fairly informative and clearly written, and I would encourage vacationers to at least consider the fellow inhabitants of the beaches, those which cannot speak for themselves (coral and fish).