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Next week, seventh round of Joan Marí Cardona local research seminars

Jornades estudis locals joanmaricardona 2017The Formentera Council's heritage office wishes to announce that next week, October 2-6, the island will welcome back the Joan Marí Cardona research seminars for their seventh year. The day-long conferences, or jornades, will run from 8.00pm in the Office of Culture and Heritage's conference room.

“Since 2011, the Jornades d'Estudis Locals have been a way for the Council to promote research related to Formentera's cultural heritage,” explained patrimony secretary Susana Labrador. “This year's mission is the same”.

The following speakers were chosen for this year's programme:

Marina Mayans Marí, chemist, for research on ethnobotany on Formentera.
Benjamí Costa Ribas, head archaeologist at the Museu d'Arqueologia d'Eivissa i Formentera, for his expertise on Formentera's undersea archaeological patrimony in the museum's collection.
Maria José Escandell Torres and Ricard Marlasca Martín, archaeologists, for their work on the Byzantine necropolis dig site at carrer del Metge Vicent Riera in Sant Francesc Xavier.
Francesc Xavier Torres Peters, Eivissa cathedral canon and liturgy and patrimony delegate diocese, for his insight on Formentera-related documentary sources in Eivissa's historical Pabordia archives.
Antoni Marimon Riutort, professor of contemporary history in the Historical Sciences and Theory of the Arts Department at the UIB, for his historical research on Balearic emigration to Latin America.

In this way, the conference program is configured as follows:

Monday 2 Introduction to the ethnobotany of Formentera
Marina Mayans Marí

Tuesday 3 The Formentera heritage preserved in the Archaeological Museum of Eivissa and Formentera Benjamí Costa Ribas 

Wednesday 4 A new Byzantine necropolis on Formentera: burials at sa Tanca Vella                                  Maria José Escandell Torres and Ricard Marlasca Martín

Thursday 5 Documentary testimonies of Formentera in the historical archive of the Eivissa Pabordia
Francesc Xavier Torres Peters

Friday 6 Balearic emigration to Latin America. The case of Formentera
Antoni Marimon Riutort

As in the last year, the Formentera Teaching Centre has included the series of conferences within the educational offer for teaching staff, so that the Ministry of Education of the Government of the Balearic Islands will recognise the credits Those interested in attending the sessions.

Formentera's water service launches web portal

web formentera aqualiaThe Formentera Council, in partnership with the concession-holder on water supply and sewage services, Aqualia, encourage residents to check out the company's latest tool in communicating with islanders:  http://www.aqualia.com/ca/web/aqualia-formentera.

With the new site, which is designed to be responsive and enable automatic compatibility with all manner of devices (mobile, tablet and computer), the water company hopes to give customers a direct point of contact where they can locate their office, learn about service changes on the island, visit Aqualia Online's virtual office for customer service issues and get informed about Formentera's municipal water service.

Web content on the site is available in Spanish and Catalán. Download the Smart Aqua app, go paperless with online bill pay, find out about current rates...those are just some of the things customers can do from the site's home screen.

Plus, in the “Actualitat” (“what's new”) section, residents can get all the latest news about the local water service.

The site is AENOR-certified for level AA accessibility (UNEIX 139803:2004).

With all the information you need about waterworks on the island, the site is just one of the ways Aqualia works to satisfy customers, adapting their service to customers' needs and changing technologies. It is a modern service designed for transparency and efficiency, they said.

This Friday, Formentera stages sports gala

Friday, September 29 at 8.30pm, Formentera will welcome the island's Gala de l'Esport 2016/2017 to the cinema. Jordi Vidal, head of sports at the Council, says the gala was “conceived to honour people, associations, sports clubs and private entities that devote efforts to fitness and sport”.

Distinctions will be given for:
- Best sportsperson of 2016/2017
- Best sponsor/partner
- Best sports group
- Most work in support of sport, nominations
- Two panel-selected “honorary mentions”

The panel, composed of 15 spokespeople from the different groups on the CiF plenary and chaired by Secretary Vidal and honorary chairperson (and sitting CiF president) Jaume Ferrer, met on July 17 in the administration's hall of ceremonies to choose the honorees.

In addition to an appearance from Balearic sports secretary Fanny Tur, Vidal encouraged the whole island to come pay tribute to the island's leading lights in sport.

Pine processionary info session

Foto lluita processionaria premsaThis Thursday, September 28 in the Formentera Council's hall of ceremonies (sala d'Actes), a 7.30pm info session will be held on the pine processionary caterpillar on the island. Sandra Closa, head of the Palma government's healthy forests service, will tell crowds about the ins and outs of the CiF/Govern balear's control efforts this October.

The first plague of the pine processionary on the island was detected in 2007 and efforts to stem its spread have been afoot since then. One method involving pheromone traps began afresh in mid-July, when crews took to the island's wooded areas to install 1,102 traps. In mid-September, a tally of captured caterpillars indicated a upturn since 2016: 4,280 in 2017 compared to 2,125 one year earlier.

In an attempt to control the pest, officials have determined to resort to additional methods, including aerial treatment with a biological phytosanitary product.

The aerial treatment involves dusting pine trees from a helicopter equipped with differential GPS, a technology that allows operators full control of dosage and affected areas. The process uses extremely low quantities of bacillus thuringiensis/kurstaki, a bacterium which exists naturally on the soil and on plants. The product, which quickly degrades under UV rays, disappears from leaves within days, does not effect bees and is used to control pests like mosquitos.

From October 2 some 1,500 hectares of land on the island will be submitted to a double dusting. Meteorological conditions like temperature, wind, relative humidity and rainfall and the caterpillars' particular stage of development will affect the nature of treatment.

It is worth noting that in 2014 a planned dusting using the chemical agent diflubenzuron was rejected by the people of Formentera. The current treatment has been rubber-stamped by the Consell d'Entitats' land and environment committee, which received input from island beekeepers and hunters, and the Formentera Council plenary.

Other treatments
Crews will also push forward with a second kind of treatment, which targets the caterpillars' nests. The pine processionary protects itself from the winter cold by building itself nests. Since 2010, with help from the Balearic nature institute and forest service staff, the regional department of environment and the Formentera Council have embarked on nest removal campaigns.

Another method entails using predators of the caterpillar. Crews have already set up some shelters for bats and approximately forty more will be installed next month.

Leaflets to educate residents about the pine processionary, printed by the Formentera Council and the Govern balear, will be handed out at the talk and in other places.

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