Latest Gran Canaria News, Views & Sunshine
Menas Case: Foundation Siglo XXI directors allegedly filed false invoices, unrealistic expenses and repeatedly drew funds from ATMs, meant for the care of migrant children, even charging botox facial treatments and posh restaurant bills to foundation debit cards
Jun, 2023 |
A comprehensive analysis conducted by Group I of the Economic and Fiscal Crime Unit (UDEF) of the National Police yielded scandalous results, writes Spanish language daily Canarias7, regarding the alleged irregular use of the public funds intended for the care of unaccompanied minors, by the suspected to have been perpetrated by centres managed by the Foundation Social Response Siglo XXI on Gran Canaria and Lanzarote. In this case, driven by the Anti-Corruption Prosecutor’s Office, investigators discovered that the director of the Guiniguada centre charged the NGO responsible for €1,500 worth of beauty treatments and €1,113 for bills at top restaurants including Vinófilos, El Vasco de Vegueta, and Triciclo.
Centre-Right Pact Between Regionalists (CC) And Resident Conservatives (PPAV) Returns Marco Aurelio Perez As Southern Mayor
Jun, 2023 |
The conservative Partido Popular-Agrupación de Vecinos (PP-AV) and the right of centre regionalist Coalición Canaria (CC) have this Thursday signed a local government pact that will shape the future of the southern Gran Canaria tourism municipality of San Bartolomé de Tirajana. The alliance, dubbed a “Pact for Stability and Socioeconomic Progress of San Bartolomé Tirajana”, represents 60% of the votes cast in the municipality’s recent local elections, emphasised the mayor-elect, Marco Aurelio Pérez (PP-AV), who returns for the third time to lead the local council responsible for some of the most important tourism areas on the island, including Maspalomas, Playa del Inglés and San Agustín.
Local Government Coalition Agreement Maspalomas and the South of Gran Canaria
Jun, 2023 |
A governing coalition pact has been finalised in San Bartolomé de Tirajana. The Popular Party–Agrupación de Vecinos (PP-AV) conservative residents party is to join forces with regionalist centre-right Coalición Canaria (CC) to govern the main tourist municipality on Gran Canaria for the next four years. Marco Aurelio Pérez will serve as mayor for the entire four-year term, and the Popular Party will take charge of Employment, Sports, Roads and Infrastructure, and Human Resources, among other areas. The regionalists, led by Alejandro Marichal, will oversee Urban Planning, Economy and Finance, and Tourism as their main departments.
Storm Óscar Latest: Government of the Canary Islands Declares Rain Alert for Western Islands and Gran Canaria
Jun, 2023 |
A storm system, dubbed Óscar, has formed over the last few days over the mid-north Atlantic, unusual for this time of year, and has led to concern from meteorologists and journalists as it passes south of the Azores, its tail should reach The Canary Islands, before the system heads northeast towards mainland Spain. Advisory warnings have been issued in expectation of heavy rainfall, primarily in the Western Isles of the Canary Islands Archipelago, though some rainfall is also expected to reach Gran Canaria over the next couple of days. It seems unlikely that any major consequences will stem from the bad weather, however these things can be unpredictable and so every precaution is taken to ensure people are informed and kept safe.
Foundation Investigated for Alleged Mismanagement of Public Funds Meant for Care of Unaccompanied Migrant Minors
Jun, 2023 |
The 7th Investigative Court of Las Palmas de Gran Canaria has opened a preliminary investigation into the Social Response Foundation Siglo XXI and four of its directors. The Anti-Corruption Prosecutor’s Office in Las Palmas filed a complaint against them, alleging crimes that could include forgery of commercial documents, mismanagement, and embezzlement of public funds. The investigation aims to determine whether this nonprofit organisation, and its officials, could have misused public funds intended for the care of unaccompanied migrant minors, during the migration crisis of 2020 that was precipitated by the pandemic confinement on the islands, leading to a build up of arrivals having to be assessed and cared for by the Canary Islands Regional Government, using hotels left empty due to the lack of tourism. The estimated amount involved in the alleged misuse stands at around €12.5 million between 2020 and 2022 on Gran Canaria alone.
Cordial director says they will fight “illegal” decision to allow cement factory to continue in Port of Santa Águeda
Jan, 2023 | Business, Government, News, Tourism
The general director of hoteliers, the Cordial group, a member of the Las Palmas tourist association, Nicolás Villalobos, has described as “illegal” the decision taken by the Canarian Regional Government to extend the usage of the deep water port of Santa Águeda so that the cement company CEISA (Cementos Especiales de Las Islas SA) can continue to operate beyond its concession which expired last October. <!–more–>
#VoteLocal: Want to have your say? The deadline to register for next May’s local elections is January 15, 2023
Dec, 2022 | Community, Government, Local Council, News, politics
Across Spain, municipal elections, to vote for your representatives in your local town hall, will be held on May 28, 2023. All EU nationals, legally resident, have the right to stand for election in their local council, and to elect the councillors whose job it will be to serve you and local interests, defend citizen rights and administrate local town hall funds to where they are most needed and useful for the the community.
Free resident travel will be limited to regular and frequent users with monthly bus passes
Nov, 2022 | News
Free public transport in the Canary Islands is to be limited to those people who use bus services on a regular basis, in their day-to-day activities, using one of the usual monthly or annual bus passes already issued by the Gran Canaria Single Transport Authority or similar institutions on the rest of the islands.
Heat Alerts issued for Risk to Health on Gran Canaria and other islands
Jul, 2022 | News
A red notice has been issued for the south eastern municipality of Santa Lucía de Tirajana, on Gran Canaria. With orange notices for La Aldea de San Nicolás, Artenara, Mogán, Tejeda, San Bartolomé de Tirajana, Agüimes, Ingenio, Valsequillo and Vega de San Mateo. And a yellow notice is in force for Santa Brigida. Alerts have also been issued on Tenerife, La Palma and Fuerteventura
The Canary Islands Government’s Ministry of Health, through the General Directorate of Public Health, have announced the activation og health risk warnings between July 19 and 23 in various municipalities around Gran Canaria, as well as on the islands of Tenerife, La Palma and Fuerteventura. Temperatures in the shade are expected to exceed 32ºC daytime and not lower than 24ºC at night, triggering the Preventive Action Plan for the Effects of Excessive Temperatures on Health.
Red notice (high risk) :
Gran Canaria: from July 19 to 23 in Santa Lucía de Tirajana.
Orange Warning (Medium Risk) :
Gran Canaria: from July 20 to 23 in La Aldea de San Nicolás, Artenara, Mogán, San Bartolomé de Tirajana and Tejeda. From July 20 to 22 in Agüimes, Ingenio, Valsequillo and Vega de San Mateo.
Tenerife: from July 20 to 22 in Arona, Granadilla de Abona and San Miguel de Abona.
Yellow Notice (Low Risk) :
Gran Canaria: July 20 and 21 in Santa Brígida.
Tenerife: on July 20 and 21 in Adeje. On July 21 and 22 in Fasnia, Güímar and Vilaflor. On July 21 in Arico, La Orotava and Santiago del Teide.
La Palma: on July 21 in Breña Alta, Fuencaliente and Tazacorte.
Fuerteventura: on July 21 in Betancuria, Pájara and Tuineje.
The General Directorate of Public Health has issued reports to the Vice-Ministry of Social Rights of the Government of the Canary Islands and the municipalities, through the Canarian Federation of Municipalities (FECAM), detailing the areas affected by the forecast of simultaneous high temperatures, and sent reminders of the measures they must take on those days to protect the health of the most fragile members of their communities:
Drink plenty of water or fluids without waiting to feel thirsty, unless there is a medical contraindication. Avoid alcoholic and very sugary drinks.
Avoid exposing yourself to the sun during the hours of greatest heat intensity (between 11 a.m. and 4 p.m.), so preferably before 11 a.m. or after 4 p.m.
In the hottest hours, place yourself in the coolest areas of the houses or residences, or, where appropriate, place ventilation or air conditioning devices, or lastly, use fresh damp cloths or take a shower.
Avoid sports activities, excursions or visits out in the hottest hours. Carry out these activities in the early hours of the day, in the late afternoon or at night; protect yourselves from the sun and drink plenty of drinks that replace fluids and mineral salts (juices, isotonic drinks, water, etc.).
Eat light meals that help replenish the salts lost through sweat (salads, fruits, vegetables, gazpachos or juices).
If you have to go outside, try to be in the shade, wear light and light-coloured clothing, protecting yourself from the sun with approved hats or caps and sunglasses. Wear cool, comfortable, breathable shoes.
Be careful with medications, especially those that must be in the refrigerator for proper storage.
Always maintain the food cold chain.
In the event of presenting any symptomatology associated with heat such as headaches, dizziness, cramps, general malaise, a sensation of suffocation due to heat, fatigue or exhaustion, you must contact 1-1-2.
These actions are intended to increase risk prevention capacity by applying measures that are easy and accessible. The plan is aimed at the entire population, and especially designed for the population groups most vulnerable to intense heat, such as the elderly, children and people with chronic pathologies.
All hospitals and the Canary Islands Emergency Service (SUC) have staff designated and specially trained to deal with and effectively coordinate services in the event of a possible heat wave, as well as the communication channels established for adequate surveillance.
Temperature thresholds and risk levels
In order to establish a heat health risk warning, maximum and minimum temperatures must be reached simultaneously. These are the temperature thresholds, which are set each year by the State Meteorological Agency. For the two Canary Islands provinces the temperature threshold is 32 degrees maximum and 24 minimum.
The Plan for the Prevention of the Effects of High Temperatures on People’s Health establishes four different levels of health risk, depending on the expected temperatures and their duration over time.
????Los próximos días varios municipios estarán en aviso por altas temperaturas ???????? https://t.co/9dtA2TJQMf
— Sanidad Gobcan (@SanidadGobCan) July 18, 2022
Covid-19 infections on the rise as Gran Canaria returns to Alert Level 3
Jul, 2022 | News
Gran Canaria has returned to Alert Level 3 due to rising infections. In reality, for now, that does not mean any serious increase in restrictions, with masks, hand washing and social distancing being our primary tools to combat further increases. Nonetheless most appear to have ditched even those simple measures, and so it may take some serious effort to get people to refocus themselves on breaking the chain of transmission. For now most measures remain suspended, as we detailed back in march here on The Canary News
There has been talk for several weeks of a resurgence in Covid-19 infections, however as the regional government is no longer collecting data on anyone under the age of 60 is has been hard to know what is really happening on the ground. Nonetheless it has been clear that at least two Omicron sub-variants have been driving infections in the UK, and here on the islands a slow increase in the numbers of pensioners infected has now started to materialise into more widespread reports of infections throughout the population of The Canary Islands.
It appears, now, that we are in the grip of a 7th wave of the pandemic, with nearly 20% of available hospital beds currently occupied by coronavirus patients. Despite this early data the regional government have thus far ruled out a 4th round of vaccine jabs for anyone under the age of 60, though that position may change depending on how severe the current wave looks to become, and as we head towards our third winter dealing with a pandemic that seems far from over, no matter how much new normality we have all tried to return to.
Stay safe, be kind, look after yourselves, and each other.
From Saturday The Canary Islands suspends all restrictions and maintains prevention measures
Article from march on the suspension of covid measures
The Ministry of Health has this Thursday updated the health alert levels following the General Directorate of Public Health’s epidemiological report, carried out in accordance with the latest new Surveillance and Control Strategy critera for Covid-19, following the acute phase of the pandemic, and based on indicators such as use of assistance services.
According to the report, Gran Canaria rises to Alert Level 3 once more and La Palma to Alert Level 2, both based on the evolution of the indicator for the use of conventional beds, which is now at High Risk, while for the moment the use of ICU beds is not has been affected.
The rest of the islands currently remain at the same alert level as they were: Tenerife at Level 2, for Medium Risk, and Lanzarote (where La Graciosa is included epidemiologically), Fuerteventura, La Gomera and El Hierro are all at Level 1, or Low Risk.
The indicators of the use of health services, based on the occupation of hospital beds, are the fundamental markers for the current severity of covid-19, and are taken into consideration to determine the level of health risk. Five alert levels are established (from 0 to 4) that assess whether the situation is one of controlled circulation, which would be the 0, or low (1), medium (2), high (3) or very high risk (4).
Throughout the Canary Islands’ autonomous community as a whole, the daily average for conventional hospital beds occupied by Covid-19 patients is now at 18.5%. The level of risk remains at Medium for the Canary Islands. Gran Canaria has been consolidated at high risk levels and La Palma also rises to high risk. Tenerife and El Hierro remain at medium risk, Fuerteventura is oscillating between medium and low risk, Lanzarote between the low risk and controlled circulation, and La Gomera remains in controlled circulation.
Stable trend in ICU bed occupancy
The number of ICU beds occupied stands at 25 beds on average over the last week, with an occupancy percentage continuing at 4.6% of those available, meaning that the indicator remains at controlled circulation throughout the Autonomous Community as a whole, and on all the islands individually, except for on Tenerife and Gran Canaria, which have now risen to the Low Risk marker.
ICU beds occupation per 100,000 inhabitants remains at 1.06 and on most of the islands this marker is still in controlled circulation, except for Gran Canaria and Tenerife, which are now at a Low Risk levels, and on La Palma, which has been oscillating between low risk and controlled circulation.
Incidence in people older than 60 years
Throughout the Autonomous Community as a whole, the Accumulated Incidence rate at seven days (AI7) for people over 60 years of age has risen by five percent compared to the week previous. Most of the islands are now at high risk levels, with the exception of La Palma, which has remained at medium risk, and La Gomera, which drops to medium risk this week.
Gran Canaria heatwave starts to dissipate, though Orange advisory remains in place this Monday, 43ºC measured yesterday in Agüimes
Temperatures look set to drop a little this Monday across the Canary Islands, following our first proper heatwave of the summer, though will still exceed 35ºC in the shade across the south of Gran Canaria, according to Rubén del Campo, spokesman for the Spanish State Meteorological Agency (AEMET), which also suggests that by Tuesday temperatures will normalise, however by the end of this week, he warned, they could rise once more.
Across mainland Spain the second heat wave of the summer looks set to be “extensive and intense”, lasting until at least Thursday, although the State Meteorological Agency say it is “quite likely” that it will continue into next weekend and could reach all the way into next week, some days having the potential to reach temperatures of 45ºC, in the shade, as North African desert winds continue to heat up.
For the moment, AEMET has indicated that Spain’s highest temperatures over this past weekend, on Sunday, July 10, exceeded 43ºC in mainland areas of Extremadura and Castilla-La Mancha, as well as on the island of Gran Canaria, where the mercury touched 43ºC in the shade in Agüimes and 42.8ºC in San Bartolomé de Tirajana.
On Saturday night, into the early hours of Sunday, Agüimes saw minimum temperatures of no less than 33.7ºC and in San Bartolomé de Tirajana the night air did not drop below 30ºC. During the early hours of Sunday to Monday, sleepless nights have been reported across the Canary Islands as well as at various points across the south of peninsular Spain.
AT 06:00 this Monday morning, the minimum temperature had not dropped below 38ºC in San Bartolomé de Tirajana (according to reports from Europress).
The spokesman pointed out that the current heat wave is being produced by the presence of a high pressure ridge over the Spanish territories, associated with very warm air, and within this ridge there are downward movements of air that compressed and increase the pressure heat heating the air below still further.
Added to this is the very stable atmospheric situation, which prevents large air movements and favours clear skies.
On Monday, on the mainland, an air mass will arrive from Africa that will raise temperatures “even more”. That mass is also carrying suspended dust from the deserts, which will prolong the swelter for the rest of the week, expected to last up to nine days.
This could form storms, accompanied by gusts of intense wind and electrical activity, so AEMET has also warned that this could cause forest fires, since the risk will be very high or extreme across much of Spain.
Gran Canaria this Monday has a yellow warning (risk) due to large waves, and an orange warning activated (significant risk) as temperatures could climb to 37ºC in the shade, across some areas of the east, south and west, as well as at the summits where it is expected to reach 34ºC. Much hotter in direct sunlight.
The islands join the more than 30 Spanish provinces that have had advisory warnings for risk (yellow) or significant risk (orange) this Monday due to the heat wave, which will leave temperatures of more than 40 degrees in some places, according to this mornings forecasts from (AEMET).
La Panza del Burro can be oppressively warm and can mean that Las Palmas hardly ever sees the sun at this time of year, until it clears in September
The Belly of The Donkey – La Panza del Burro
On Gran Canaria’s rugged northern coastal strip, the day has started with slight cloudy clearing during the morning, with could see more cloudy intervals from noon onwards tending towards still further cloud cover by the end of the day, this summer time phenomenon is named for the grey cloud cover that often hits the north of the islands during summer, trapping heat below it. The orange advisory alert for high temperatures will continue across the south of the island throughout the afternoon, as will the yellow advisory for rough seas.
On the rest of the island, slight some cloud is possible, but mostly clear skies, however Calima is affecting inland areas and the summits, though should start to clear by the end of the day. Night time temperatures will start to fall, locally notable in south facing inland areas; and maximum daytime temperatures will decrease slightly, although 37 ºC+ in the shade will still be likely inland across the south. North winds will have strong intervals, and occasionally very strong gusts on east and west slopes, more likely during the afternoon; at the summits, winds from the northeast should ease to light breezes during the second half of the day.
All advisory warnings should be cleared, as some cloud returns on Tuesday for the north of Gran Canaria, once again, tending to cloudy intervals during the middle of the day opening of some clear skies in the afternoon; across the rest of the island, there may be some slight cloud or else clear blue skies. Temperatures will fall noticeably inland and there will be a moderate cooling along the coasts; with 30ºC in the shade still likely, and could still be exceeded locally, particularly in direct sunlight. North winds will be more intense on the extreme west and southeast slopes; at summits, weak to moderate west winds.
By Wednesday we could see a predominance of slight cloud, or else clear skies with occasional intervals of low cloud, across the north of the island. Temperatures will see few changes though should continue to decrease towards seasonal averages. Winds will have a northerly component in high areas, and elsewhere will come from the west, generally as warm breezes.
As we head towards the weekend, daytime temperatures in the shade, on the south, could be sustained in the low to mid 30s, though evening values should return to a much more comfortable mid-20s centigrade, promising some tropical nights ahead without unwelcome interruptions to your beauty sleep.
Gran Canaria Weather: Heatwave expected as temperatures exceed 40ºC in the shade this weekend
Spanish State Meteorological Agency (AEMET) have announced the first proper heat wave of the summer, accompanied by desert winds from the Sahara this week. The trade winds have been keeping the archipelago cool, as the sub-tropical summer has started to heat up, however now AEMET foresees a notable rise in temperatures throughout July and in particular over the next few days. With “the African continental air mass” expected to “move westward affecting the Canary Islands”.
This weekend is set to see some of the highest temperatures in the Canary Islands so far this year, potentially exceeding a sultry 40ºC in the shade by Sunday, inland, across all the islands, according to AEMET’s latest forecasts. There is little if any chance of rain.
Areas to the north, this Wednesday, below 800 meters will likely start with some cloudy intervals clearing up during the middle of the day; with cloud returning during the later hours. Elsewhere any cloud is expected to clear as temperatures start rising, locally and south facing areas head towards 30ºC in the shade. Northeast winds will be strong in places, particularly the extreme northwest and on southeast slopes, where gusts could occasionally reach 70 km/h. At the summits, winds should be a little lighter, and more likely breezes across the south coasts
By Thursday a touch more cloud to the north, during the morning, clearing from midday and again returning a little towards sunset. Mostly clear blue skies elsewhere with probable light Calima dust and winds traveling at altitude, creating a thermal insulating layer of Saharan air above the archipelago. Maximum temperatures starting to rise, mainly affecting southern inland areas, where it could reach or exceed 32ºC in the shade locally. Northeast winds, with strong intervals to the extreme northwest and on southeast slopes, again with a probability of gusts reaching 70 km/h, more likely by the end of the day.
As the week comes to an end, increasing sand and dust from the African continent, just 160km away, is likely, causing temperatures to rise, even at night, inland. Maximum temperatures this Friday will rise generally, notably so in inland areas. With 30 – 32ºC expected or exceeded on some islands, and 34ºC likely across the southern half of Gran Canaria. Northeast winds will be more intense on southeast and northwest slopes.
The Calima will continue into the weekend as maximum daytime and night time temperatures continue a moderate ascent. Temperatures exceeding 32 – 34ºC are expected inland, but should be slightly cooler on the north coasts, however in the southern resort areas of Mogán and Maspalomas thermometers are expected to reach 37º – 40ºC in the shade, much hotter in direct sunlight. Northerly winds, will be more intense on southeast and northwest slopes, while breezes are more likely across the southern beaches, giving little if any respite from the heatwave ahead, which will likely continue well into next week.