Sailors are furious about the new limitations imposed on boats anchoring on sand, which are contained in the Natura 2000 Management Plan for the Llevant coast of Mallorca.
Sailors' Associations in the Balearic Islands have condemned the regulations as “a new attack on the Nautical Sector” and are threatening legal action.
The Management plan states that vessels over 16 metres long can only anchor at a depth of 15 metres in popular coves, such as Cala Falcó, Cala Virgili, Cala Antena, Na Romaguera, Es Domingos , Cala Murada, S'Algar, Portocolom, Cala Marçal, Cala Brafi, Cala Sa Nau and Cala Mondragó.
The restrictions are even tighter in Cala Mondragó where a ban has been slapped on charter boats and rentals and only boats up to 12 metres long can anchor on sand.
“There are no technical reasons that justify it; limiting tourism is not an excuse, because they are also forbidding Mallorcan families who want to rent a boat, something which is increasingly common given the great shortage of moorings,” said Association of Mediterranean Navigators President, Biel Dols.
“These measures show a great ignorance of the Nautical Sector, which the Government does not know how to regulate and does so by issuing bans; it criminalises a Sector that’s capable of generating employment and wealth and blames us for the destruction of posidonia, whilst doing nothing about underwater emissaries,” said Jaime Darder, ANAVRE Association National President.
“The Government has a very distorted view of the Charter Sector, which has endured this crisis precisely because of the Mallorcans who rent boats to navigate the Island,” added Responsible Recreational Fishing Association President, Bernadí Alba.
“This plan tries to order the anchorages in a precautionary manner by placing the larger ships further from the shore,” insists the General Director of Biodiversitat i Territori, Llorenç Mas who also claims that the ban on charter boats in Cala Mondragó “is in line with the PORN of the Mondragó Natural Park to prevent excessive amounts of people.”
The Natura 2000 Management Plan for the Llevant delimits the preferential refuge area between the two buoy fields in Portocolom where there is no posidonia.