The Canary Islands Government Ministry of Health reports that the Archipelago received 43 Blue Flag awards for clean beaches, and 5 awards for marinas, according to the assessment of the Blue Flag 2019 environmental program international jury in Madrid. The Blue Flag initiative is managed, in the Canary Islands, in collaboration with the Ministry of Health, through the Canary Islands Health Service General Directorate of Public Health.
The Blue Flag distinguishes those beaches and marinas that meet the organisations set criteria of excellence regarding quality of bathing water, and who comply with environmental regulations, having adequate sanitary and safety infrastructure to guarantee the health and safety of those using the facilities.
Gran Canaria won 14 Blue Flags, Tenerife 9, Lanzarote 7, Fuerteventura 4, La Palma 5, La Gomera 3 and El Hierro 1 for their beaches.
In addition to the awards obtained for beaches and marinas, this year the Canary Islands won 3 distinctions for Blue Flag Centers, 4 distinctions for Blue Paths and a thematic distinction in environmental education.
The biggest disappointment for Gran Canaria was the Municipality of Mogán, which didn’t receive any blue flag this year for its beaches. Having last year lost the flag on the tourist beach of Playa de Mogán and this year losing the flag on another popular beach, Amadores.
The official blue flag beaches (1 less than in 2018) on Gran Canaria for 2019 include Las Canteras in the capital Las Palmas de Gran Canaria,
San Agustín, Maspalomas, Meloneras, Playa del Inglés in San Bartolomé de Tirajana, Hoya del Pozo, Salinetas, Melenara, La Garita in Telde, Sardina in Gáldar, Arinaga beach in Villa de Agüimes, El Burrero in Ingenio and in Arucas El Puertillo and Los Charcones.
Blue flag Marinas for 2019 on Gran Canaria: Puerto Deportivo de Mogán and the Marina Pasito Blanco in San Bartolomé de Tirajana
Blue Flag Centres for 2019 on Gran Canaria: San Bartolomé de Tirajana, for the Natural Reserve Interpretation Centre at the Dunes of Maspalomas
Blue Flag paths for 2019 on Gran Canaria: the Bahía del Confital walkway and Playa de Las Canteras both in the capital Las Palmas de Gran Canaria
The prestigious Blue Flag is an annual award for a system of environmental quality certification developed by the European FEE (Federation of Environmental Education). In Spain, the initiative is coordinated by ADEAC (Association of Environmental and Consumer Education). The ‘Bandera Azul’ promotes and rewards participation in voluntary environmental initiatives by municipal authorities, the local and visiting population and agents of the tourism sector.In the Canary Islands, the Blue Flag initiative is managed in collaboration with the Ministry of Health of the Government of the Canary Islands, through the General Directorate of Public Health of the Canary Islands Health Service.This international program rewards the efforts of local councils and managers of marinas to meet the high demands set by the Blue Flag initiative and which is a guarantee of sanitary and environmental quality, care for the environment, accessibility and services as well as excellent levels of water quality.The criteria to obtain the award are grouped into four areas: quality of bathing waters, information and environmental education, environmental management and health and safety, services and facilities.The Blue Flag Program was implanted in Spain in 1987 and the following year the Canaries were incorporated into the initiative, winning three flags that first year in the municipalities of Adeje (Playa de Troya), San Bartolomé de Tirajana (Playa del Inglés) and Santiago del Teide (Playa de La Arena).
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