New Balearic rules to protect the world’s oldest plants.

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Government protects the Posidonia
By María Vila Rebolo
The Balearic government has approved a decree to protect the 650 square kilometers of marine posidonia meadows within its borders. This is highly significant as half of all the posidonia on the coasts of Spain are located in the Balearic Islands. The preservation of this important plant is of great importance because it is the longest living organism in the world (100,000 years old), and it is a vital generator of oxygen for the Mediterranean Sea.

One of the main reasons that more protection was needed is the damage caused by indiscriminate anchoring of pleasure boats. The new law will control this problem by dividing the posidonia meadows into two categories. In the "high value" areas anchoring will be totally forbidden. Other areas will allow some anchoring of low impact activities and professional fishing, but this will be strictly regulated. The decree also prohibits damage to the posidonia by aquaculture systems, trawling, and the dumping of chemicals and untreated waste into the sea.


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