Experts propose profitable and sustainable cultivation of microalgae to denitrify the subsoil of the Mar Menor


Experts from the universities of Murcia and Alicante have produced a report, at the request of Los Alcázares Town Council, in which they propose the profitable and sustainable cultivation of microalgae to denitrify the subsoil around the Mar Menor.

The coastal town council commissioned the research to two educational centres in order to establish solutions to the problem of the water table and the high levels of nitrates.

The Town Council recalled that Los Alcázares and other municipalities in the area live with the problem of the rising water table and the high presence of nitrates in the Campo de Cartagena aquifer, which causes seepage into the Mar Menor and the entry of nitrates into the salt lagoon.

The councillor for Economic Promotion, Pedro José Sánchez, indicated that “there are microalgae such as spirulina which is cultivated in waters with high levels of nitrification and which has been shown during the research to grow at high speed in waters with the levels of salt and nitrates found both in the groundwater and in the Cartagena aquifer”.

The solution proposed by the researchers from both universities is to use the cultivation of this microalgae to denitrify the quaternary water and the water table in a sustainable and profitable way, allowing the nitrate-free water to be reused.

“In this way the water in the Campo de Cartagena aquifer, which is directly affecting the health of the Mar Menor, could be denitrified,” said Sánchez.

For his part, the mayor of Los Alcázares, Mario Pérez Cervera, said that he would continue to collaborate with projects aimed at guaranteeing the recovery and regeneration of the Mar Menor, including measures already underway such as replacing the sewage network, disconnecting it from the rainwater networks and improving the town’s pumping stations.

“In this case, we want to deal realistically with a problem that we coastal municipalities have with the water table,” added the alcazareño councillor.


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