Yucatan News: Street Drains!

By Khaki Scott

Merida to Get 300 Street Drains

Drains in Yucatan Mexico We have all become used to a number of well-traveled streets in Merida becoming flooded during rain storms. The water may not come up into the houses unless the streets are full and a vehicle causes waves, but it does stop people from moving about the city easily and is an expensive inconvenience for many businesses. That is all to end soon. Within 15 days, the city will begin drilling 300 new storm drains in Merida. They are to be located in all quadrants of the city. This should be a significant help to everyone who has to drive to work and shop, continuing to make Merida a more and more liveable city.

Findings of Medicinal Plant Conference

This past week, the X International Meeting on Natural Products Research was held in Merida. The goal was to share findings and research on biological, biotechnological and pharmaceutical issues. From a study of 15 species of medicinal plants native to the Yucatan Peninsular, specialists from the Yucatan Center for Scientific Research (CICY) were able to show that it is possible to develop herbal medicines, in the future, that could treat diseases such as malaria, tuberculosis, cancer or HIV. Mexico is one of the four nations that can boast the largest diversity of plants in the world. It is no surprise, given their long history of traditional medicine, that Mexico – and Yucatan – will lead the way in the development of traditional and herbal medicine far into the future. We are definitely looking forward to hearing more about this. We also know that Casa K’in (www.casakin.org) recently held a workshop on traditional herbal medicines and is planning to hold another one in the fall. All good news!

200,000 Families to Receive Televisions

New Television to Poor People in Mexico
From August through December 2014, 200,000 families who receive benefits from SEDESOL will receive a new, digital, 24-inch flat screen, high definition television, equipped with ports that will allow for extending their capabilities to receiving signals with higher quality picture and sound. The televisions will be energy efficient and are expected to reduce the electricity consumption of analog televisions by more than 60%. The energy savings throughout the country will be enormous. The families who will benefit from this national program live in priority developments, are agricultural laborers, are 3×1 migrant families, are participating in a temporary employment program, are in the SEDESOL program for Seniors, or participate in a life insurance for heads of household program. While it may not seem at first glance to be a politically correct thing to do, replacing those old televisions is a very practical thing to do and you cannot deny those kinds of savings.

Senior INAPAM Games Held in Merida

Progreso is moving on up in the National Games for Older Adults. A group of grandmothers won in dominos and 76 year old Juan Jose Vivas Ceballos sang his way to first place. This is a good time to let our older expatriates know that, if they are at least 60 years old, they too qualify for an INAPAM card in Mexico. Rolly Brook has an excellent description of the benefits, as well as all relevant links at INAPAM Senior Discount Card. While some may think it really might not be worth it to apply for their INAPAM card, they think better of it the next time they catch a bus to Cancun. And, no matter your age, do always try to come out and support the talented Older Adults of Yucatan.

Yucatan and Oaxaca Negative for Pork Virus

Pig and Pork Virus in Yucatan Mexico
The pork virus that has killed at least 7 million young pigs was originally identified in the United States. Since the virus was first identified in the United States, Mexico began restricting the importation of live pigs from the USA. Still, the virus was found in 17 of Mexico’s 19 pork-producing states. Yucatan and Oaxaca both tested negative for the virus and both are in the southern part of the country. It is important to know that the pig virus is not contagious to humans, but it kills so many pigs, so rapidly, that it ends up driving the price of pork up and causing economic hardship for producers and consumers. Hopefully, the virus will soon be under control and tragedy can be avoided.