LAS PALMAS DE GRAN CANARIA, Canary Islands, August 14, 2017 /PRNewswire/ --
- The sporadic appearance of microalgal blooms on a limited number of Canary Islands beaches is a natural phenomenon caused by a range of biological, environmental and climatological factors and is unrelated to any form of pollution
In response to continued international press reports about beach closures in the Canary Islands caused by 'toxic microalgae', the Canary Islands Government, via Health Minister José Manuel Baltar, has clarified that health and environmental experts guarantee that the presence of microalgal blooms at a small number of Canary Islands beaches is a sporadic and natural event caused by a rare combination of biological, environmental and climatological factors. The microalgae is in no way connected to any form of pollution, has not led to the closure of any Canary Islands beaches, and is not toxic.
This natural phenomenon, which is rare and sporadic, has not led to any bathing restrictions at Canary Islands beaches other than a small number of red flag events at a few beaches. When microalgae appears at a beach, driven ashore by the wind, waves and currents, it only affects a small area and then only for a short period.
The only effect of microalgae is skin irritation and the Canary Islands Health Authorities therefore recommend that people avoid direct skin contact with the blooms. These are easy to identify due to their characteristic appearance and colour. It must be noted that the Canary Islands Public Health System has not seen any variation in the number of reported cases of skin irritation since the start of the phenomenon.
Figures from the Canary Islands Government Monitoring System for Beach Safety and Water Quality, which follows European regulations, rate 98.2% of Canary Islands beaches are excellent with 0.9% are rated as good and 0.9% as uncategorized. These figures are delivered annually by the Ministry of Health of the Kingdom of Spain to the European Commission's European Environment Agency.
Despite this temporary situation, which only affects a small number of the beaches in the Canary Islands and then only prevents swimming in the limited areas directly affected, tourist activity goes on as normal in the Canary Islands. Our visitors are enjoying the swimming areas of the vast majority of beaches in tourist areas as they always have done.
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SOURCE PROMOTUR TURISMO DE CANARIAS