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Areas Urbanism & territory, Tourism and Economic activities Environment

Sustainability at core of new Save Posidonia Project initiative

foto-spp gen-gob1Alejandra Ferrer, Antonio J Sanz and Josep Marí—the president/tourism councillor, environment councillor and primary sector councillor, respectively, of the Consell de Formentera—led today's unveiling of the first-ever push for scientist volunteers. Piloted by nature advocacy group GEN-GOB, the effort is one of two (the other is IMEDEA's Antroposi) that, in 2017, Save Posidonia Project's evaluating committee elected to fund for a two-year run.

President Ferrer traced SPP's origins to the determination within the Consell to promote sustainable tourism and build funding to preserve Posidonia oceanica and educate residents and tourists about the effort. Ferrer pointed out that the project would offer “clearer data about the current state of preservation of this crucial local plant”.

Geolocating coastal impact
The environmental group's €48,836 study involves pinpointing the spots where the seagrass suffers the most intense impact, not to mention gauging the health of posidonia meadows where boats anchor. GEN-GOB's activities coordinator, Marià Marí, pointed out that “one of the things we'll be doing is training students of marine science to study, order and superintend underwater habitats on Formentera's coastline”.

The presentation took place at la Savina port alongside the sailboat Ryujin (El Drac de la Mar). There, from 24 July to 5 August, volunteers from Albacete, Alacant, Murcia, Madrid and Cádiz are on hand to learn the theory and practical aspects of the scientific methodology used by the GEN-GOB marine department to record and evaluate the ecological health of seagrass meadows, impact of mooring watercraft, and other possible strain on the coast.

Inter-guild partnerships
SOLDECOCOS (a shortening of “Society for the Development of Coastal Communities”) is also collaborating in the project by offering use of its boat. The organisation's strategic director, Jorge Sáez, seized the opportunity to present the president of the local fisherman's guild, Iván Pérez, with gifts to initiate a cooperative partnership with a federation of similar guilds in Cádiz.

As a symbol of the will to work together between communities of the Mediterranean Basin, the Cádiz town council presented President Ferrer with salt from the Cádiz salterns and a bottle of virgin olive oil.

1 August 2019
Communication department
Consell de Formentera

Summer school participants spend day cleaning micro plastics

escola-estiu sirena1Children enrolled in Formentera's summer camps spent the day getting rid of the micro plastics littered across Cala Saona beach. The effort was a success thanks to help from Plastic Free Formentera, which brought in an actress who, dressed as a mermaid, led a story time session about the importance of saying “no” to single-use plastics.

Youth councillor Vanessa Parellada said it was just one of the activities scheduled for participants of local escoles d'estiu (literally “summer schools”, though the programme is more similar to day camp). This year's programme, “Breathe the island”, is aimed at “educating islanders about how to use plastic appropriately, and building environmental consciousness”.

Children also learned about the role of lifeguards at beaches. Later, they will use the micro plastics they've collected as decorations at the end-of-summer festival. Tomorrow, another group of day camp participants will be involved in a similar micro plastics cleanup at Ses Platgetes beach in es Caló.

30 July 2019
Communication department
Consell de Formentera

Formentera adds voice to campaign for Mediterranean turtle

tortuga-1-The Environment department of the Consell de Formentera has joined the València-based Fundació Oceanogràfic's “Tortugues en el Mediterrani” initiative. The administration will put up informational posters at CiF bulletin boards, beaches and summer camps to develop awareness around the Caretta caretta species, or loggerhead sea turtle.

Citing the case of a sea turtle that ran aground last week on an Eivissa beach, Councillor of Environment Antonio J Sanz described the campaign as “designed to educate beachgoers and individuals who live near the sea about what to do if they see turtles on our coasts”. Posters inform islanders of the importance of calling 112 in order to activate the response protocol.

In Councillor Sanz's telling, “tourists and residents must understand the importance of caring for these special animals; they play a key part in the underwater ecosystem”.

More than forty towns in the Spanish regions of València, Múrcia and Balears are promoting the initiative. In September the informational signs will go up in the lighted advertising spaces near major bus stops on the island.

29 July 2019
Communication department
Consell de Formentera

Port authority boss makes first official visit to Formentera

foto-visita-miquel-mir-forment1Administration chief Alejandra Ferrer held a meeting today with Joan Gual de Torrella, the head of the Balearic port authority (APB). Meeting at 12.30pm in the sala d'Actes, the two officials were joined by Ana Juan and Susana Labrador, the island's vice president and deputy vice president, respectively, as well as councillors Rafael González, Pep Marí and Bartomeu Escandell, and, on the APB side, Juan Carlos Plaza and Ignacio Revilla (the agency's director and delegate to Eivissa and la Savina).

President Ferrer said attendees spoke about what has been called the new “Special Strategy” for the la Savina port, including plans for additional harbour buildings—part of phase two of construction, which is scheduled to start at the end of summer. Ferrer said the new areas were also expected to come with facilities for the local fishing industry.

The Formentera president also held up a deal between the Consell and APB that will be key to installing museum displays in la Mola lighthouse. The APB chief congratulated the Consell on what he called “a project that could be used as a model for other lighthouses”.

Gual de Torrella said the completion of phase one gave “increased visibility” to the sea and would make the port “more welcoming for tourists and islanders alike”. He said to watch out for “brand-new spaces specifically designed to support everything from training to innovation, year round”.

Gual de Torrella indicated that soon, la Savina port would be equipped with air quality sensors that islanders will be able to check online.

15 July 2019
Communication department
Consell de Formentera

CiF equips public schools with water fountains

foto-escola-de-la-mola premsa1The Formentera Council's Office of Environment reports that, as part of the participatory spending initiative of the Consell d'Entitats, seven water fountains have been installed across the island's three public primary schools: four at Mestre Lluís Andreu (Sant Francesc), two at CEIP Sant Ferran and one at CEIP de la Mola.

Acting environment councillor Daisee Aguilera said she was extremely pleased with the initiative—a proposal that the Island Residents' Association (AVIF) hoped would “help kids cut back on the plastics they use and the processed drinks they drink”.

The fountains themselves cost €10,000 and were put in by the Formentera Council works brigade. An additional five will be set up in the coming days between the high school and the fitness centre as part of the same initiative.

The idea started at the Consell d'Entitats, which convened last night for a special session. The 8pm gathering served to sign off on the the most recent meeting minutes of the group and other sectorial subcommittees.

13 June 2019
Office of Communication
Formentera Council

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