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Environment

Formentera bids farewell to “Vidrio por Posidonia” with awards ceremony

foto 2020 vidre per posidonia 1Formentera chief of environment Antonio J Sanz attended the official wrap-up of Ecovidrio’s “Vidrio por Posidonia” (Glass for Posidonia) campaign today at Camí de sa Guia. On hand at the gathering were Roberto Fuentes, regional director of the non-profit entity in charge of recycling, Ecovidrio, along with the Eivissa environment conseller, the coordinator of the non-profit ecological group GEN-GOB’s harbours division, and other figures and representatives from groups and sports clubs honoured at the event.

The island governments of Formentera and Eivissa, in collaboration with the town councils of Eivissa, Sant Antoni de Portmany, Santa Eulària des Riu, Sant Joan and Sant Josep, introduced “Vidrio por Posidonia” in February in a bid to build awareness among football clubs about the importance of recycling discarded glass containers.

A month before its placement on standby amid emergency orders, the initiative saw the installation of two football-shaped containers on the two islands and “Vidrio por Posidonia” decorations on bins near sports club facilities as a reminder to athletes, trainers and their families to recycle glass waste correctly.

Awards ceremony
According to the Ecovidrio director, 7,000kg of glass containers were collected over the course of the campaign, with benefits going toward the prizes handed out as part of the day’s ceremony. GEN-GOB, which works to promote conservation of posidonia meadows in the Pine Islands, was awarded €1,000 for diving gear.

Cheques valued at €200 for sports gear were also delivered to the following clubs for companion initiatives: Penya Independent de Sant Joan (“Vidre al contenidor”); CD Ibiza Islas Pitiusas (“Pitiuso de cor”); SD Portmany (social media promotion of “Vidrio por Posidonia”); Rapid CF (“Pinta el teu escut i recicla l’ampolla”).

Local environment chief Antonio J Sanz applauded Ecovidrio’s work piloting the campaign, which was conceived to educate young people in sports clubs about how crucial it is to recycle glass—“one of the materials with the highest effective rate of recycling”, noted Sanz, “meaning the ecological protection afforded by glass recycling is paramount”. “Who better than our two islands understands the importance of safeguarding a crucial resource such as Posidonia oceanica?” he asked.

14 July 2020
Department of Communications
Consell de Formentera

Formentera adds name to fire prevention push

The Formentera offices of interior and environment have joined a wildfire prevention campaign piloted by the Balearic government. The drive is directed at islanders who live or own property in the countryside and owners of dwellings which are located near forests.

Islanders who work the land can reduce the risk of fire by directing special attention to the perimeter of their property and removing nearby vegetation. Other recommended measures include keeping grass cut near drystone walls and breaking up homogenous planted material to reduce the risk that a fire traverse large stretch of land.

In an effort to create safe buffer zones, islanders near forests are encouraged to clear a 30-metre radius around their home. Tree tops should be trimmed if they are less than three metres from a home or from other trees, as should any trees over three metres tall. Thirty per cent of underbrush should also be cleared.

Interior conseller Josep Marí said islanders’ collaboration on safety protocol was pivotal to preventing fires, “particularly during high-risk periods like summertime”. Antonio J Sanz, who heads the environment department, reminded residents of the ban on fires and controlled burns currently in effect in forested areas.

The Consell de Formentera will promote the campaign on social media and among islanders at large.


6 July 2020
Department of Communications
Consell de Formentera

Es Pujols, first smoke-free Formentera beach

foto 2020 es pujolsThe Consell de Formentera reminds islanders that this year for “Smoke-Free Week” (Semana sin humo), Es Pujols beach will earn a new distinction, becoming the first stretch of the Formentera shoreline to be included in the Balearic Directorate General of Public Health’s initiative to wipe smoking from beaches. Seven other beaches on Mallorca and Menorca are already on the list, plus Eivissa’s Cala d’Hort, which was the first on the larger Pine Island to participate.

The aim of the move, according to environment conseller Antonio J Sanz, is to “encourage and incentivise healthy habits while pressing beachgoers to keep natural spaces clean”. Sanz pointed out that plastics and cigarette butts are the most common types of improperly discarded rubbish on the Formentera seaboard.

31 March, World Tobacco-Free Day
Smoking is considered by the World Health Organisation to be the leading cause of preventible sickness and death. In the years since the creation of Smoke-Free Week, the final week in May has been marked by an array of activities designed to educate the public about the negative effects of smoking and second-hand smoke. The Balearic health ministry is also reminding people in the region that assistance is now available for individuals seeking a pharmaceutical plan to help them quit. Since the start of 2020, doctors have been able to prescribe varenicline and bupropion, two of the three treatments available.

The Consell has also added its name to the public health directorate’s “Smoke-Free Smile” annual outreach effort (somriuresensefum.caib.es). The recently updated page contains helpful information and tips about quitting smoking for the public and for healthcare professionals.

30 May 2020
Department of Communications
Consell de Formentera

Underwater and coastal cleanup at Ses Illetes

cartell 2020 dia medi ambientThe Formentera Department of Environment has scheduled a cleanup of the Ses Illetes shoreline and seafloor in commemoration of World Environment Day tomorrow, Friday 5 June. The two-part effort will see volunteers teaming up with Plastic-Free Formentera to comb Ses Illetes beach and, from 4.00pm, divers from Formentera Divers and Vellmarí combing debris from the nearby seafloor.

As to the timing of the cleanup, environment chief Antonio J Sanz highlighted the current absence of mooring ships, and the recent revelation by diving enthusiasts concerning a build-up of debris in the area. Conseller Sanz hailed the collaboration of the diving centres and environmental group Plastic-Free Formentera.

In compliance with Covid-19 protocols on the beach and in the water, participants must sign up in advance. Islanders wishing to take part in the shoreline cleanup should send an email to plasticfreeformentera@gmail.com. Volunteers for the underwater effort are asked to contact info@formenteradivers.com formentera@vellmari.com. Space is limited.


4 June 2020
Department of Communications
Consell de Formentera

Calling to mind traditional uses, Consell offers up 5,000m3 posidonia cleared from coasts

foto 2020 retirada posi1The Formentera Department of Environment reports that, after a four-week operation that saw crews pull close to 5,000 cubic metres of posidonia seagrass from Cala Saona and Ses Illetes beaches, island residents are being encouraged to request their share.

“This is a great chance to put to work one of our most treasured natural assets”, said department chief Antonio J Sanz. Posidonia has historically had an array of uses: as animal bedding or tilling fields, for instance, or as isolation in country homes.

Islanders interested in repurposing some of the seagrass can visit the Àrea de Medi Ambient, make an inquiry via the OVAC, call 971 32 10 87 or send an email to mediambient@conselldeformentera.cat. The posidonia will be dropped off at no charge, and requests will be granted of up to three truckloads per person.

Conseller Sanz highlighted the collaboration that brought together municipal crews and the coastal authority over the past month. “They’ve kept beaches clean and other infrastructure operational even during these trying times of public health emergency”, he said.

This year’s posidonia haul amounts to ten times the volume removed in 2019, a change likely explained by natural factors like storms, which can trigger greater volumes of seagrass turning up on the coastline.


13 May 2020
Department of Communications
Consell de Formentera

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