Published on : Thursday, August 1, 2019
Palma de Mallorca in Spain and Dubrovnik in Croatia welcome thousands of cruise ship passengers from abroad every day. However, they’re struggling to adjust with what majority of its citizens see as an excess of tourist numbers, along with air pollution caused by cruise ships. The port of Palma, in south-west Mallorca, is Europe’s third busiest ports for cruise ships (receiving 1.75 million passengers annually) and the second most polluted (behind Barcelona).
At present residents, activists and organizations have joined to sign an appeal for the number of cruise ships to be restrained to just one every day, with a maximum of 4000 passengers disembarking daily. The petition explains that megacruises at Palma have increased in unsustainable and undesirable manner for our city, creating a serious impact on environment and territory, as well as growing social protests. It has so far received 11,000 signatures and will be presented at a conference in Palma on Friday.
To quote Marta Ferriol, coordinator of the NGO Tramuntana XXI, one of the organizations that signed the petition, as informing the Guardian: “The problem is cruise ship tourists arrive all at once and they saturate the historic part of the city. They don’t spend money in the city. We’ve recently seen a report from Venice that says this type of tourism brings few benefits to residents.”
As the city authorities have to respond to the petition so far, Dubrovnik is by now moving forward with its designs to perk up the way the city manages a high volume of cruise ships. In order to “preserve and protect” its cultural heritage, the city and Cruise Lines International Association (CLIA) recently signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) to establish best practices for long-term destination management.