Last updated on March 6, 2018
Holbox, Q.R. — After a day of closure, the island of Holbox is under reconstruction as municipal officials ensure regular water and electricity.
Problems began last week when nearly 20 electrical blackouts were recorded. By the end of the week, the island was without full electricity, disabling water pumps and limiting water supplies to island homes and businesses.
The people of Holbox and Chiquilá have been requesting action to fix leaking water lines and restore proper electricity to the area, however requests have gone unanswered. Gerardo Mora Vallejo, head of the Water and Sewerage Commission (CAPA), explained that a meeting was held to review the network and that authorities have agreed to provide new water extraction points to inject more water to the island.
Independently the Secretariat of Infrastructure and Transport (Sintra) also works to support Holbox with the transportation of potable water.
“The governor’s instructions were to immediately address the problem of Holbox. We have projected that by the end of the day they will have regularized electricity and drinking water service. In the meantime, we are continuing to supply water in pipes of 10,000 and 20,000 liter capacities,” said Alejandro Ramos Hernández, director of Sintra.
In addition to the lack of electricity and water on Holbox, there are also problems with the drainage system, which adds waste to the island. Governor Carlos Joaquin Gonzalez reported that they will allocate 44 million pesos for a hydraulic system.
He announced that 30 million pesos will be for sanitary drainage, while 14 million more will be invested in storm drainage.
“Drainage has a cost of just over 30 million peso, rainwater drainage something like 14 million peso that we have obtained through Fonadin, through Conagua and through state funds also for rainwater and sanitary drainage of Holbox. Sometimes the will is important, but we require financial resources,” he said.
He explained that the breaking point was the ground saturation of the drainage and the water shortage, derived from the total occupation of the 1,200 hotel rooms in Holbox.
“The straw that broke the glass was the lack of water. We have practically filled all the hotels, the drains are saturated and the water does not have enough pressure to attend them. This obviously generates a desperation that makes us take urgent measures,” he said.
He added “we will start the drainage system in a few more days”.
Four years ago the Secretary of Energy authorized the installation of underground cables for the supply of energy from Tizimín, Yucatan to Holbox, however, that 83 million peso investment failed to materialize.
State officials say they and their work teams will remain on the island until the situation is resolved.