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Dominican Republic Takes Major Step In Fighting Against Sargassum With New Government Decision

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Travelers to the Dominican Republic will no doubt have noticed sargassum becoming a huge talking point, and not just here, but in all the destinations in this beautiful corner of the world.

Unfortunately, for many, it has been more than just a talking point; the smelly algae has been washing up on the beautiful white sand beaches of Punta Cana, Puerto Plata, and La Romana, to name a few, for years now.

Each year, the amount seems to grow larger, and the sargassum season equally seems to get longer and longer.

Well, a new major step has been taken in the Dominican Republic to combat this scourge of tourism and protect the beautiful coastline for travelers.

Dominican Republic Takes Major Step In Fighting Against Sargassum With New Government Decision

A New Step

The president of the Dominican Republic, Luis Abinader, has created the Cabinet of the Fight Against Sargassum.

This new political department will focus only on the sargassum issue, studying its causes and effects and creating policies that will help to remove this headache from travelers and return the promise of year-round white sand beaches and clear waters.

Sargassum on a dominican republic beach

Falling Behind

It would be a fair assessment to see this as coming a bit late. Sargassum has been washing up on the shores of the Dominican Republic for years, and the response has been slow, to say the least.

As a comparison, the Mexican Caribbean, which has seen much higher levels of sargassum reaching its shores, has been acting fast to contain the issue and combat the problem.

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A man cleaning up a large pile of sargassum

Public clean-up operations with specialized tractors, naval vessels with sargassum-catching nets that pull the algae back out to sea, and huge at-sea barrier systems to divert 1000s of tons before they ever reach the shore, are just a few of the systems already in place in the Mexican Caribbean.

It’s hoped that now that the Dominican Republic government is taking an active interest in the issue, similar programs will soon be in place across the destination.

Sargassum barrier and boat cleaning seaweed

High Expectations

The Dominican Republic prides itself on its clean and beautiful beaches. There are 100s of miles of fantastic beachfront in the country, and it is one of the biggest draws for travelers visiting the country.

In brochures and on travel agency websites, the stunning coastline paints a beautiful picture, and travelers rightly expect to arrive in the country and experience that promise of amazing beaches.

The government and tourism industry in the Dominican Republic know this, which is why it comes as a surprise that it has taken so long to see a strong response to sargassum.

Dominican Republic beach

What To Expect

It can be easy to write off the inclusion of government in an issue like this as just a political move to save face. But, the Dominican Republic’s track record for successful public initiatives, no matter the government in power, is very positive.

Any traveler who has experienced the highways in the nation will confirm that the infrastructure and public works are up to a high level. And this applies even more so in tourism hotspots.

aerial view of Punta Cana with resorts and beach

For example, Punta Cana, the vacation heartbeat of the Dominican Republic, is fantastically clean, modern, and well serviced by the local and national government.

The same goes for almost all of the tourism destinations within the country. Everyone, from small mom-and-pop shop owners up to the Directors of large resort chains, understands the importance of the Dominican Republic living up to its image as a beautiful and clean destination.

A tropical beach in the Dominican Republic with sunny sky

With that being said, there is no crystal ball to say how successful this move will be. But considering how fast and diligently the nation works on other issues that affect tourism, it’s fair to give them the benefit of the doubt and expect this to be a potentially huge turning point in the sargassum battle.

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