WATER FOR LIFE, INTERNATIONAL ART EXHIBITION, 4th Edition 2021-2022: Message from Carlos Alberto Esperón Vilchis, Anthropologist and Director of the Maya Museum, Cancun, Quintana, Roo, MEXICO
CENOTES, WATER, LIFE
The Mayan Museum of Cancun proudly welcomes the temporary exhibition of “Water for Life”, International Art Exhibition, 4th Edition, an event that contributes to raise awareness about the growing global concern of how to preserve water as a fundamental element to sustain and reproduce on the planet, with the development of plans and culture to protect a scarce element: water.
The Yucatan peninsula, Mexico, (where the city of Cancun is located) is a large platform that emerged from the sea 65.5 million years ago after the impact of a meteorite that changed the course of life on our planet, creating a ring of cenotes, with a unique underground river system.
According to the information published by National Geographic, there are more than 7,000 cenotes in the Yucatan Peninsula.
The “cenotes” are sinks in the limestone that reveal underground rivers, caverns with water.
Inside the cenotes you can find aquatic life, such as fish and mollusks, as well as various geological formations and tree roots.
For the Mayas (indigenous group located in the Yucatan peninsula before the arrival of the Spaniards), the cenotes were used for funerary and religious ceremonies.
Unfortunately, these bodies of water have been contaminated by sewage filtrations and solid waste, some others have been used to store rubble or even as septic tanks; at the same time, the beauty of these places has been of great touristic attraction, with the consequent pollution that derives from this sector.
Water is the generator of life, the contamination in the aquifers has a solution if treated in time. Society, States – as a nation and, in general human beings are responsible for the care of the environment.
It is time to start a process to reduce solid waste that flows into groundwater, which will allow us to deal with the imbalance caused by the lack of clean water and the loss of species.
The Cenotes are… Water and Life
Carlos Alberto Esperón Vilchis,
Anthropologist and Director of the Maya Museum,
Cancun, Quintana, Roo, MEXICO