The 2022 Black Flags

Every year, the same as beaches all over Spain are awarded Blue Flags for their excellence, ecologists award Black Flags at the opposite end of the scale.

AXA Acantilados de Maro 400x250Some of these ‘negative’ flags went to La Rábita ( Albuñol) and La Charca in Salobreña but there was one special mention for the Paraje Natural Acantilados de Maro-Cerro Gordo because of the pollution caused by sunbarrier cream in the water.

The nationwide ecologist group, Ecologistas en Acción, which monitors 8,000 kilometres of coastline, 356 days a year, said that they could have included many more beaches than the 48 selected on the ‘black’ list – fortunately, they didn’t.

“Every time somebody covers themselves with barrier cream and then swims in the sea, they are leaving some of it in the water and if you multiply that by the thousands of people on the beaches, thanks to increasing tourist numbers, it creates a great environmental impact,” they explained.

Of course, protecting you skin from the harmful effects of the sun is a priority but some of these creams contain endocrine disruptors, sometimes also referred to as hormonally active agents, which are an important contaminating agent.

The problem with the coves along that part of the coastline is that there is not much movement of water (hydrodynamics) coupled with a massive human presence in peak summer.

(News: Maro, Nerja, Axarquia, Costa del Sol, Malaga, Andalucia)

  2 comments for “The 2022 Black Flags

  1. Warrens Questions
    June 21, 2022 at 12:21 pm

    I’ve just read you can be fined for having a wee in the sea
    Stop the world; I wanna get off.

    Viva tropical
    ps: it doesn’t mention number twos.

  2. Paul Craddock
    June 16, 2022 at 8:30 pm

    Many countries around the world have banned the types of suntan cream that is a problem. There are now many safe alternatives. People can be fined for using the banned substance. The damage is unmistakably noticeable—in fact, nearly 90% of coral reefs in the Caribbean have disappeared since the 1980s.
    Much of the tourist trade in the Costa Tropical is diving related and if we let the sealife degenerate there will be large drop in income. An education campaign is required to let people know of the problem along with a ban on local shops selling the product.

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