Monthly Archives: August 2011

Rain In Todos Santos, Visit To East Cape Baja Sur

Monday, August 22, I went on a car journey around the cape area of Baja Sur. We needed to drop off a car in storage near the airport in San Jose del Cabo so we drove Highway 19 from Todos Santos to Highway 1 in Cabo San Lucas, dropped the car off and then went north on Highway 1. We detoured to snorkel at Cabo Pulmo (the water was excellent and many fish were around but less than I had hoped for) and then continued north to Los Barilles and then west to El Triunfo and back on Highway 19 to return to Todos Santos. Highway 1 on the East Cape was an eye opener! It was lush and green and more like a jungle than dry Baja desert. Very different than the Todos Santos area. There were standing mud puddles and ditches full of water beside the road. Amazing! The road from Los Barilles to El Triunfo is twisty with cutbacks and hairpin mountain turns. I couldn’t really take photos and drive. Oddly enough, instead of the west side of the mountains being wet and the east dry, it’s working the other way around with the east side wet and west side dry. The closer we got to the Pacific side, the drier it became. The moisture is coming from the mainland and the Sea of Cortés, hitting the mountains and raining. Not much left for the west side.

That said, it rained during the morning of August 24 (Wednesday) here in Todos Santos and in Pescadero. It was a fairly steady 30-35 minute rain that soaked into the ground. Not enough for mud puddles or standing water but the ground did get wet. By Thursday morning you could no longer tell it had rained. We need more, but it was good to finally get a little. The dust levels are down and it cooled off nicely last night when the cloud cover finally broke. The ocean is warm, the swimming is good.

<If you are reading this post on any blog other than http://www.todossantos.net or elcalendario.wordpress.com then you are reading copyrighted content that was reposted without permission of the author, i.e. Howard Ekman.>

More Press On The Resurgence of Cabo Pulmo

Since 1995, Cabo Pulmo has been a protected park and the no fishing status has been stringently enforced by locals. As researchers at Scripps Institute have reported, the results have been astounding. You can read more at the two links below:

Cabo Pulmo Flourishes

Cabo Pulmo Park Comes To Life

<If you are reading this post on any blog other than http://www.todossantos.net or elcalendario.wordpress.com then you are reading copyrighted content that was reposted without permission of the author, i.e. Howard Ekman.>

Poverty On The Rise In México

There isn’t that much abject poverty here in Baja Sur. Most people do okay. There are plenty of fish in the ocean and lots of fruit trees. It’s easy to farm if you have the desire. You don’t see a lot of homeless or beggars. I am sure there is hardship hidden but less that I expected. However the truth is that México has an enormous amount of poverty nationwide and the economic crisis that began in 2008 has only made it worse. It is very disheartening to think that over 46% of Mexicans live in such poverty.

The Washington Post had a great story on the rise in poverty in México as of a 2009 report but they have taken it offline. Here are the bare facts from the report.

MEXICO — The Mexican government says poverty rose by 1.7 percent between 2008 and 2010 due to the global economic crisis and an increase in food prices.

A study by the National Council for the Evaluation of Social Development Policy says there were 52 million poor people in 2010 compared to 48.8 million in 2008.

That means about 46.2 percent of Mexico’s population of 112.7 lives in poverty. Of those, 10.4 percent live in extreme poverty.

The study released Friday says extreme poverty remained the same.

The council considers a person who earns 2,114 pesos ($181) per month to be poor. The extreme poor are those earning a monthly salary of less than 978 pesos ($84) in urban areas and 684 pesos ($58) in rural areas.

<If you are reading this post on any blog other than http://www.todossantos.net or elcalendario.wordpress.com then you are reading copyrighted content that was reposted without permission of the author, i.e. Howard Ekman.>

Semarnat Visits Los Cabos Bearing Good News

According to the Gringo Gazette (and you must always take what they print with a handful of salt, lime and tequila although they usually get the message from visiting government agencies correct) Semarnat, the Ministry of Environment and Natural Resources at the federal level, representative Elvira Quesada said that the proposed Concordia gold mine in the Sierra de la Laguna mountains will not be allowed to continue. Apparently the land that Concordia has a permit to explore is not owned by them due to title irregularities. The permit they have will expire in July 2012 and not be renewed. The land under question is being claimed by Semarnat and will then be merged into the protected area of the Sierra de la Laguna. Semarnat’s state representative (Baja Sur) says Concordia does not have a mining permit and they will not get a land use or deforestation permit.

Semarnat also brought bad news for the Cabo Cortés development. They say over 100 scientists from many different organizations are currently working on the environmental impact statement which is needed for the project to continue. This is the first time that various oversight agencies have worked together on an impact statement. Also, more studies are needed besides the impact statement and they will take years to complete. For the project to continue, these studies must prove beyond any doubt that no harm will come to the protected marine park at Cabo Pulmo. Making matters even worse for Cabo Cortés, they need more money, $800 million dollars worth and their funding is coming from CAM in Spain and CAM is in trouble and hoping for a Spanish government bail out. With all the economic and monetary union problems in Europe and Spain in particular, this could mean no more funding for the project.

Whew! That’s a lot to digest, but if true, it’s great news. Let’s hope so.

<If you are reading this post on any blog other than http://www.todossantos.net or elcalendario.wordpress.com then you are reading copyrighted content that was reposted without permission of the author, i.e. Howard Ekman.>

Todos Santos Weather And Rumor Update

Last night was hot. It was 86F inside when I went to bed around 11 pm. This morning at 7:30 am, it was 85.5 F inside. Outside was the same. We currently have more clouds in the sky than not, but the sun is peaking through on occasion. The temp is up to 88F, inside and out. In a small rustic town  with few air conditioners, that’s hot! Oh and it’s humid too. All thanks to Hurricane Greg, so far south of us, but still pushing hotter humid air and water north.

I heard some rumors yesterday. First, there will be a new palapa bar with sand floors going in across the street from Cafelix on Calle Juarez. I was told the proprietor is in management at the new Guaycura Hotel in Todos Santos. Supposedly they will have live reggae music until the wee hours of the night. Not sure how the residents of central Todos Santos will like that but we will see.

Second rumor is that once again, plans are underway to pave the Playitas Road from the end of the current pavement up to 8 km north, covering all of Las Tunas. That would be great, especially for our cars, but I have heard these things before will believe it when I see the work begin.

<If you are reading this post on any blog other than http://www.todossantos.net or elcalendario.wordpress.com then you are reading copyrighted content that was reposted without permission of the author, i.e. Howard Ekman.>

Warm And Muggy Again

And it’s no wonder either with Tropical Storm Greg churning south of us. He’s not likely to directly affect us but will make it more uncomfortable both during the day and night.  We are having a rather delightful summer so far, with daytime breezes mostly from the west-northwest and cooler ocean temps. Historically, mid August is when it starts to get hotter due to increased tropical activity to our south.

tropical storm greg south of baja sur mexico

Tropical Storm Greg Projected Path - courtesy NOAA

Still no rain worth mentioning in Todos Santos. There has been lots of localized rain between San Pedro and La Paz and up in the mountains but not here. Not yet at any rate.

<If you are reading this post on any blog other than http://www.todossantos.net or elcalendario.wordpress.com then you are reading copyrighted content that was reposted without permission of the author, i.e. Howard Ekman.>

Most Mexicans Think Their Economy Is Tanking

I just found this posted on Sundog. What’s really interesting is that only in our state, Baja California Sur, did a majority of Mexicans believe the economy was getting better. Very interesting!

Survey finds 60 pct of Mexicans downbeat on economy

Published August 12, 2011

Mexico City – Nearly six in 10 Mexicans believe their country’s economy went downhill over the last 12 months and few are confident things will get better next year, the polling firm Parametria said.

The company released the results of a study based on 12,800 interviews carried out in person between June 14-28 in every Mexican state. The margin of error is plus/minus 0.9 percent.

The survey shows that 53 percent of Mexicans consider that their personal financial situation got worse during the last 12 months and only 36 percent expect to experience an improvement over the next year.

Parametria said that interviewees had much the same opinion about the national economy, with 56 percent saying it has deteriorated and only 33 percent confident that it will perform better next year.

Perception of where the economy is going differs somewhat by states, for while 44 percent in Baja California, on the U.S. Border, consider that their economic situation improved over the past year, 67 percent of interviewees in the southern state of Guerrero said theirs got worse.

The polling firm said that the darkest outlook of all was in the central state of Hidalgo, where a mere 5 percent saw any improvement, while 70 percent said that their personal economy took a hit.

The national economy polled even worse in Hidalgo, where a whopping 75 percent said that it had plummeted over the past year.

Baja California Sur went against the tide, however, and was the only state where more than half the population saw Mexico’s economy on the rise.

Looking ahead to Mexico’s 2012 presidential election, Parametria said pocketbook issues are likely to be paramount for many voters.

<If you are reading this post on any blog other than http://www.todossantos.net or elcalendario.wordpress.com then you are reading copyrighted content that was reposted without permission of the author, i.e. Howard Ekman.>