10 Maltese beaches get Blue Flag status
Ten beaches in Malta have been awarded the blue flag status, one more than last year’s count.
They are St George’s Bay, Fond Ghadir Bay, Westin Dragonara Hotel and Spa Beach, Qawra Bay, Bugibbat Beach, Mellieha Bay, Golden Bay, Ghajn Tuffieha Bay, Islands Edge Beach (Paradise Bay Hotel), and Ramla il-Hamra in Gozo.
It is the first time Golden Bay has achieved the accolade, after being recognised as a Beach of Quality in 2015.
Gozo’s Hondoq Bay and Marsalforn Bay were awarded Beach of Quality status.
Beaches that achieve Blue Flag status meet high standards for water quality, safety, environmental education and information, the provision of services and general environmental management.
The St George’s Bay, Bugibbat Pearched Beach, Qawra Beach, and Mellieha Bay sites were particularly praised for their environmental education activities.
There was a word of warning for Ghajn Tuffieha, Ramla Bay and Island’s Edge beach, with the international jury that awards Blue Flags noting that their bin standards remained substandard.
The jury also stressed that Mellieha Bay, Bugibbat, Qawra, San Georges Bay and Fond Ghadira beaches should be monitored more to ensure that the proper waste separate and waste disposal is up to standard. Failing to do this would mean that they may lose their Flag during 2016, the jury warned.
In a statement, the Malta Tourism Authority welcomed the news. It thanked MTA employees working in its Product Development Directorate for their commitment to beach management and also had words of praise for the Cleansing Services Directorate, Environmental Health and the Planning Authority.
MTA CEO Paul Bugeja said that the increased number of Blue Flag beaches would ensure “that our summer product continues to be competitive”. Now the MTA had to work harder to do even better in the future, he added.
Post credit: Times of Malta