F.A.Q.

For the Ecoareas, your opinion and involvement are vitally important.

You are welcome to participate actively to establish by consensus the basic criteria for the definition of the Micro Areas.

DECALOGUE OF CONSENSUS

1. What is the coastal ecotourism areas project, Eco-areas?

An innovative and pioneering initiative to give a boost to coastal areas with ecotourism potential.

This project designs and implements new methods in order to revitalise and evaluate coastal environments, encouraging their use for tourism based on the sustainable use of the natural heritage.

It relies on the active involvement of the civil society (public and private), generating collaborative and consensus processes for a solid and long-lasting governance.

These Eco-areas are not a new form of environmental protection, but they can help strengthen the existing ones, and promote the creation of new protected areas.

2. How do they interact with other forms of marine protection such as the Natura Network 2000 or the Marine Reserves of Fishing Interest?

An Eco-area must benefit and be compatible with any pre-existing form created by any of the public authorities which focuses on the development of sustainable practices.

Eco-areas are meant to be spaces which are duly certified, and which are proposed to be voluntarily included during the participation process.

As it is the case with other certifications, it is not necessary for the Eco-areas to have their own legal classification. In fact, one of the goals of this project is to help facilitate the work of the public authorities by working together to reach agreements on the methods and supporting their implementation.

3. What are the objectives of this project?

To contribute to the sustainability of coastal environments by bringing dynamism to their uses and spaces and by creating a certification that confirms the quality of ecotourism areas, through the involvement of the greatest possible number of socio-economic beneficiaries.

This initiative shall create a network of coastal ecotourism areas in the Canary Islands, increasing the safety of users and encouraging public, free and open access.

4. How is it developed?

A collective work approach is used, where the different beneficiaries are involved: citizens, public authorities, researchers, NGOs, companies and other entities.

The Eco-areas are based on an evaluation system and a validation tool which is public, transparent and available to all groups that wish to participate.

5. Where can they be implemented?

In any coastal area wanting to promote a sustainable development by integrating ecotourism activities.

To put this into action, it is necessary to have the support of the local institutions and of an organised civil society wishing to get involved in the process.

6. Who can promote its development?

Since this is a process that can be started by the citizens and then taken to the public authorities (following a bottom-up approach), any individual or entity can promote the certification of an Eco-area with the collaboration of the users of the area

7. How can the public authorities, institutions and civil society groups get involved?

By taking part in the process of revitalisation and certification at any stage or specific action.

8. Will the scope of action of the public bodies be affected in coastal areas?

The Eco-areas shall not affect the competences of the different public bodies regarding the coast. In addition, they shall promote and support the cooperation between public authorities in accordance with the current legislation, starting by building agreements between all public institutions and the civil society.

9. What are the benefits of the Ecoáreas?

To promote cooperation in order to improve the different uses of coastal areas.
The Eco-areas shall encourage new proposals for a sustainable and responsible use of the environment. They shall also promote the Blue Economy linked to the coast, with greater social involvement and guaranteeing the preservation of resources.

The goal of the Eco-areas is to provide microscale solutions and alternatives whilst boosting greater dynamics which materialise in the Network of Coastal Ecotourism areas of the Canary Islands.

They are small seeds to improve the future of these environments and of their population.

10. What commitments does the implementation and maintenance of an Eco-area entail?

The implementation of an Eco-area Project in a specific coastal area may establish new usage guidelines previously agreed upon by all the parties involved. For instance, fishing may be voluntarily limited only if professional and recreational fishermen’s organisations so agree.

All the legally defined limitations and rules shall be respected. Proposals for improving such rules may be made and they will be submitted to the competent authorities.