The initiative, which has just launched its pilot phase, will incentivise businesses in the hospitality industry to eliminate single-use plastics
Balearic Islands, 21st June 2021 – The Balearic Islands have taken another step towards becoming a more sustainable destination, with the launch of the pioneering certification “Plastic Free Balearics”. This new environmental guarantee has been developed by local conservation organisations and will certify businesses within the region’s hospitality industry that successfully reduce single-use plastics (SUPs).
The certification goes beyond the requirements of the recently introduced Balearic Waste Law, which prohibits the use of various single-use plastic products, including cups, cutlery, plates and plastic rings for six-packs, but it continues to allow the use of bioplastics.
“This ambitious certification is a fundamental tool for businesses that really want to minimise their environmental impact. At the same time, it offers key elements that help businesses obtain a competitive advantage, contributing as well to improve the competitiveness of the Balearic Islands as a tourist destination,” says project manager Jaime Bagur.
Plastic Free Balearics aims to avoid any so-called “greenwashing” by providing certified businesses with a guide to genuinely sustainable alternatives, in order to help them to replace single-use products with less harmful ones, along with a personalised roadmap detailing the steps required to become plastic-free.
The certification, which will be free during the pilot phase, is a joint initiative between IbizaPreservation and Mallorca’s Save The Med Foundation. It was developed thanks to the co-financing of the Monaco-based association, Beyond Plastic Med and includes the participation of Plastic Free Ibiza and Formentera and Plastic Free Menorca.
Under the umbrella of “Plastic Free Balearics”, these organisations are now inviting all businesses across the islands’ hospitality industry to become Plastic Free Guardians and earn from 1 up to 5 stars, free-of-charge.
Complying with the new Balearic Waste Law and EU directives is a mandatory requirement across all levels. Businesses can earn up to 5 stars, depending on the percentage of items removed from a list of so-called Red Flag products. These are highly polluting products, such as plastic bottles, toiletries, single-dose products etc. None of the certification levels accept bioplastic products as an alternative.
“The ability of bioplastics to degrade and be properly composted has not been successfully proven. Bioplastics are therefore not considered to be a suitable alternative within the new certification,” explains Bagur.
The objective of Plastic Free Balearics is to promote and develop the Balearic Islands as a region highly committed to sustainability and environmental regeneration. The initiative benefits from the support of the Balearics Government, all four Island Councils and associations of the hospitality sector, and draws from the knowledge of experts and scientists in the field.
Businesses who are interested in the certification can visit www.plasticfreebalearics.org and fill out the application form.