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Environment Days start Monday on Formentera

The University of the Balearic Islands and the Natural History Society of the Balearic Islands is organising the eighth Environment Days (Jornades de Medi Ambient) which Formentera will host for the first time on 23 and 24 January. The Consell de Formentera collaborates in the event.

The conference starts at 9.30am, Monday 23 January, in Centre Antoni Tur 'Gabrielet' and will offer a space for researchers and naturalists from various fields to present their research and work around the Balearic Islands and the islands of Eivissa and Formentera in particular. In this way, naturalists can learn what work is being done in fields other than their own.

The Formentera Office of Environment encourages people to participate in the conference, which will highlight recent years' naturalistic findings and research, and disseminate these activities to the general public. The event will also be a springboard for experience exchanges and share insight into environmental issues.

20 January 2023
Communications Office
Consell de Formentera

Consell de Formentera returns to local beaches posidonia removed in summer

foto 2023i devolucio posidoniaThe Office of Environment of the Consell de Formentera is pleased to report that this January, some of the seagrass that this summer was removed from the local shoreline, mixed with sand and stored on site per Decree 25/2018 on conserving oceanic posidonia in the Balearic Islands, will be returned to the water.

Seagrass has been returned to the beaches of Ses Illetes, Es Cavall d'en Borràs and Es Pujols.

According to Antoni Tur, environment councillor, putting posidonia back in the water serves a dual purpose: "To protect the beaches from erosion caused by winter storms, and to return the sand that had been removed accidentally when the seagrass was hauled off at the start of the season."

Regulations prohibit removing posidonia from beaches before 1 May. Rules at the Ses Salines Nature Reserve, however, are more restrictive and do not allow it before 15 May. The councillor underscored the importance of following best practices in removing posidonia to "preserve our beaches and protect them from erosion" and insisted, "Seagrass on our beaches doesn't make them dirty, it is a sign of the quality and good health of our waters."

Posidonia taken from beaches is made available to the public so that it can be used as fertiliser for fields, animal bedding and for other traditional uses.

14 January 2023
Communications Office
Consell de Formentera

Formentera sees drop in red palm weevil plague affecting Formentera palms

The Office of Agriculture of the Consell de Formentera reminds islanders that the pruning of plants like palm trees which are susceptible to infestation by red palm weevils should be done in January and February. In recent years the lowest average temperatures have occurred during these months, and pruning at this time can curb the weevil's proliferation.

Josep Marí, rural affairs councillor, praised Formentera residents for their collaboration in this regard in recent years. In 2013 the first local palm trees were destroyed due to the red palm weevil. The peak came in 2015, when 117 affected palm trees were destroyed. "We've seen a downward trend since then", explained Marí. "In 2022 only four palm trees were destroyed, and this confirms that the pest's numbers are in decline."

Office of Agriculture authorisation
Before pruning palm trees, islanders should obtain permission from the Office of Agriculture (located in Centre Antoni Tur "Gabrielet"; open 9.00am to 2.00pm, Monday to Friday). Requests can also be fielded through the Virtual Citizen Information Office (Oficina Virtual d'Atenció a la Ciudadania, OVAC). These measures are designed to safeguard palm trees and ensure that waste at the island's transfer plant can be managed properly (islanders who have received authorisation may dispose of waste at the transfer plant free of charge).

When pruning plants that are susceptible to weevil infestation, prune dry leaves only. If green leaves must be removed, cuts should be small and pruning mastic or a phytosanitary product should be applied. Cuts should be clean, not ragged. Avoid brushing stipes or trunks of vulnerable plants. Shaving or shaping should only be done when necessary, not for ornamental purposes, and should be followed immediately by phytosanitary treatment. If red palm weevils are detected during pruning, inform the Office of Agriculture so the official action protocol can be implemented.

The red palm weevil (Rhynchophorus ferrugineus), a beetle that attacks palm trees, reduces and even stops its biological activity during cold temperatures.

12 January 2023
Communications Office
Consell de Formentera

Hitting all-time high, Formentera recycles 33.91% of waste

foto 2023i ca na putxa BThe Office of Environment of the Consell de Formentera is pleased to report that last year 10,583.02 tonnes (t) of rubbish were collected on the island, up 9.16% from 2021, when the total was 9,694.64 t. The 2022 figures are similar to 2019, when 10,223 t were collected.

In a historic record for the island, recyclable materials made up 33.91% of total collections. In recent years, figures have varied (in 2019, islanders recycled 25.59% of the rubbish they generated, compared to 25.04% in 2020 and 30.13% in 2021) and the 2022 figure marks a 3.78% year-on-year uptick. In other words, Formentera residents recycle one of every three kilos of waste they generate.

Antoni Tur, environment councillor, hailed the return of a positive recycling trend that was witnessed locally pre-pandemic, and asserted that the figures demonstrate "the awareness and commitment of the people of Formentera around recycling." Even still, the councillor insisted that "we must continue to work on improving pickup, generating less rubbish and increasing awareness." He pointed out that, though Formentera is leading the Balearics in recycling, we are far from" the 50% target set by legislation on waste and contaminated soils for a circular economy (Ley 7/2022; 8 April), adding, "The work isn't finished yet." According to Tur, the new waste collection service, which will be awarded shortly, and the deposit-refund system, "will also help in improving these figures and bring us closer to the goal."

Last year the island's waste pickup service registered 6,074 t of municipal solid waste, 919.60 t of over-size waste, 969.91 t of paper and cardboard, 1,021.97 t of plastic packaging, 1,087.82 t glass and 509.32 t of organic waste.

The month the most waste was collected was August (1,814 t), followed by July (1,582.24 t) and June (1,371.46 t). The months the least waste was collected were January and February (380.94 t and 408.28 t, respectively).

10 January 2023
Communications Office
Consell de Formentera

Balearic Government announces funding to decarbonise nautical sector

The Office of Environment of the Consell de Formentera is pleased to report that from 16 December 2022 to 30 June 2023, the Balearic Government will accept applications for €15 million in subsidies to decarbonise the regional marine sector.

Within the impulse to decarbonise the nautical sector, the subsidies aim to electrify maritime transport, retrofit small vessels and purchase new ones, provide shipyards and workshops with machinery to make vessels emission-free, and acquire zero-emission regular and commercial vessels or make existing ones emission-free. For more information on the call and how to apply, click here.

This action is included in the Balearic Islands' Energy Transition Investment Plan, part of the Recovery, Transformation and Resilience Plan financed by Next Generation funds from the European Union.

15 December 2022
Communications Office
Consell de Formentera

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