This new certification, recently created by ICTE, is a guarantee of compliance with the SDGs in the management and services provided on the beaches
Benidorm, one of the first destinations to obtain the 'S' mark for Sustainable Tourism for its beaches
Benidorm has been one of the first Spanish destinations to obtain the S mark for Tourism Sustainability for its beaches, as reported by the mayor, Toni Pérez, after the meeting of the Beach Management Body held today, in which the councilor of the department participated, Mónica Gómez as well as the councilors of Urban Planning and Sports, Lourdes Caselles and Mariló Cebreros; technicians from the Department of the Environment and those responsible for the Local Police, among others.
Toni Pérez explained that the 'S' mark for Sustainability is a badge recently created by the Institute for Spanish Tourism Quality (ICTE) to guarantee "compliance with the Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) in terms of management and provision of tourist services, in this case of the beaches”. As the mayor transferred, "this brand, like the other two promoted by the ICTE and that year after year, revalidate the beaches of Benidorm, has a very demanding quality standard".
Among the requirements to obtain this distinction, "a Sustainability Report linked to the SDGs has been prepared, in which nine priority objectives have been set out from the outset to be achieved in the management and services of beaches in the short and medium term" . The mayor specified that "most of these objectives have a compliance horizon of 2023, although there are also some actions included and committed to in the report that is already being worked on or that have already been implemented this year directly from the Department, through the Master Plan of the DTI or hand in hand with the concessionary company of the beaches”.
All these actions contemplated in the Sustainability Report, he has pointed out, are directly related to six of the 17 SDGs. Thus, within SDG 3 'Health and Well-being, the objective is to increase training actions for beach personnel related to improving health and well-being by 10%; as well as for reducing attendance by 5% due to some sanitary hygienic risk.
Within SDG 6 'Clean water and sanitation', reduce to a minimum the incidences related to discharges into the sea and reduce the consumption of drinking water on the beaches. Linked to SDG 11 'Sustainable cities and communities', a clear annual objective is set: improving management, and revalidating all quality certifications; while it is intended to reduce energy consumption on beaches and promenades by 5% and train concessions and agents involved in efficient driving within SDG 12 'Responsible production and consumption'.
Lastly, in relation to SDG 13 'Climate Action', it is proposed to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 5%; and with respect to SDG 14 "Underwater life", actions will be carried out to improve the conservation of the aquatic and marine ecosystem.
The mayor remarked that "Benidorm has always been a pioneer in the management of its beaches, promoting actions and projects to gain sustainability, quality, and accessibility, the three great pillars that make our sandy areas a reference at a national and international level and that are endorsed by different certifications”. Specifically, since 2003 the beaches of Benidorm have ISO 9001 and 14001, and since 2010 they also comply with the EMAS Regulation.
Likewise, the beaches of Poniente, Levante, and Mal Pas have the 'Q' for Quality and the 'Safe Tourism Certified' seal, which is also granted by the ICTE; and the accessible beach points of Levante and Parque de Elche have the Universal Accessibility badge in accordance with the UNE-170000-1 and 170000-2 standards.
“The achievement of all these badges and certifications not only treasure the quality of our beaches but also our commitment to constant improvement and our determined vocation for sustainable management, extendable to all areas of the city and the destination; a strategy and philosophy in which we are now going one step further by setting ourselves the goal of meeting the SDGs and doing so in the shortest possible time”, he concluded.