Published On: Thu, Aug 10th, 2017

Southern Cuba loses land to the Caribbean Sea due to climate change

Havana CubaHAVANA - The coasts of the south-central Cuban province of Sancti Spiritus are losing some 1.3 meters (4.265 ft) every year as a result of climate change, according to local environmental authorities.

As a consequence, the progressive sea encroachment is increasing salinization, soil erosion and leading to the disappearance of mangrove areas, mostly in the municipalities known as Sierpe and Sancti Spiritus, which border the Caribbean Sea.

Science, technology and environment official in the province, Leonel Diaz, told reporters that the climate change impact comes with a high sea level affecting tourist beaches and agricultural production.

Local mitigation efforts include the cultivation of rice varieties that have proven more resistant to salinity and what is known as hydric stress, as well as the opening of canals that take fresh water up to the coast to fight the saline penetration.

Cuba is implementing a far-reaching climate change program, which ibludes actions to minimize the vulnerability of 15 local areas, including the zones in Sancti Spiritus province under the impact of climate change.

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