A BROWN algae has started to spread across the Costa del Sol, invading its beaches and waters.
Fisherman working on the Strait of Gibraltar have said they are struggling to make any catches, estimating that 100% has been lost.
Trawlers, meanwhile, believe half of their fish has been lost.
The algae has reached phenomenal proportions, some blankets reaching around 50 centimeters in height.
Estepona has had 2,800 tons of its seaweed collected over the course of six weeks.
Nicolas Fernandez, Secretary of the Cadiz Federation of Fishermen’s Association, said: “It’s an environmental catastrophe.”
The algae was first noticed in Ceuta in 2015, and has since spread.
In Tarifa, the issue became so large the town’s mayor, biologist Francisco Ruiz Giraldez, claimed that it was now ‘aggressively taking up the entire sea floor of the Strait’.
Giraldez and Fernandez have called on the Andalucia government for financial support, hoping they will be able to cushion the cost of fishing losses and cleaning of beaches.