S'Amarador in Santanyi is new to the Blue Flag list this year.

19-07-2018Patricia Lozano

The Balearic Islands have maintained 44 beaches with Blue Flags for 2019, the same number as last year. In total, there are 63, four fewer than 2018. The decrease applies to marinas, for which there are now 16 flags. The other three are for tourist boats.

Nationally there are 669 Blue Flags; 556 of these are for beaches. There has been a decrease of 28 overall, but Spain continues to have more Blue Flags than any other country in the world.

Valencia leads the way among Spain's regions with a total of 150 Blue Flags, followed by Catalonia (120), Galicia (119), Andalusia (98) and then the Balearics with 63. For beaches alone, Valencia is also the national leader - 135. Galicia has 107, Catalonia 97, Andalusia 79 and the Balearics 44, one more than the Canary Islands.

Andalusia is the region to have lost the most Blue Flags for beaches; the 79 are 18 fewer than last year. The Canaries have lost seven and Galicia two. The principal reasons for losing flags are increased demands in respect of control in compliance with the Coasts Law in Spain, water quality and water treatment.

The Blue Flags in Spain are supervised by the Association for Environmental Education and the Consumer. Its president, José Sánchez, said yesterday that the beach is an asset, "which we have to learn to value, respect and share". The association has been critical of illegal installations on beaches, e.g. unauthorised chiringuito bars. "There is no legality without sustainability and vice versa."

The Blue Flag beaches in Majorca are: Andratx (Sant Elm); Calvia (Es Carregador, Palmanova, Son Maties, Illetes Balneario, Cala Contesa, Torà); Felanitx (Cala Marçal, Cala Ferrera, Porto Colom - Playa Arenal, Cala Sa Nau); Muro (Playa de Muro); Palma (Cala Estancia, Playa de Palma - El Arenal); Pollensa (Cala Barques, Cala Molins, Formentor); Sant Llorenç (Cala Millor - Cala Nau, Sa Coma); Santa Margalida (Can Picafort, Son Baulo, Son Serra de Marina); Santanyi (Cala Mondragó - Sa Font de n’Alís, Cala Santanyi, Cala Llombards, S’Amarador); Ses Salines (Es Dolç - Es Port); Son Servera (Cala Millor - Son Servera, Es Ribell).

Of changes, gone from the list are beaches in Capdepera. There has been an increase in the number in Ibiza.

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