Palma incorporates the Molinar beach into the “Smoke-free beaches” programme

Jun 27, 2022 | Current affairs, Featured, Thursday Daily Bulletin, Tradition

The Directorate General of Public Health and Participation promotes this initiative in collaboration with the Regional Ministry of the Environment and the island’s town councils.
This year the Palma Town Council has incorporated the Molinar beach into the “Smoke-free beaches” programme, a programme whose aim is to raise awareness among the population about the importance of maintaining a healthy environment and reducing the generation of waste on the coast. The Directorate General of Public Health and Participation promotes this initiative in collaboration with the Regional Ministry of the Environment and the island’s town councils.

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The councillor for Health and Consumer Affairs, Patricia Gómez, and the director-general of Waste and Environmental Education of the Regional Ministry of the Environment and Territory, Sebastià Sansó, visited the beach accompanied by the director-general of Public Health and Participation, Maria Antònia Font; the coordinator of the Balearic Islands Addictions Plan, Elena Tejera, and the councillor for Health of Palma City Council, Elena Navarro. The president of the Spanish Association Against Cancer in the Balearic Islands, José Reyes, and various volunteers from the organisation also took part.

Gómez congratulated the Palma Town Hall for this adhesion, which joins that of Cala Estància in 2019. The councillor insisted that the prevention of illness and the promotion of health through the adoption of healthy lifestyles are fundamental pillars for the good health and quality of life of the population, hence the importance of extending smoke-free spaces.

He also pointed out that tobacco is the second most prevalent drug among the Balearic population after alcohol, and that smoking is a major challenge for the health system, given that it has considerable economic and social consequences. For this reason, he stressed that the fight against tobacco must be a fight that involves all institutions and society as a whole.

In this sense, he stressed that the “Smoke-free beaches” programme is an opportunity, as it appeals to citizen collaboration, responsibility and individual civic-mindedness so that people who go to these beaches voluntarily agree not to smoke.

This initiative, he remarked, also aims to improve the health of the environment by reducing the amount of polluting waste.

In this regard, the director-general of the Environment and Territory, Sebastià Sansó, said that smoking is not only a very serious public health problem but also an environmental problem, adding that it is estimated that in the Balearic Islands in 2019, 86 a million packets of cigarettes were sold, which means 1,720 million cigarette butts, “an outrage” in terms of waste management. He was therefore very pleased that the initiative will be extended to more beaches in the Balearic Islands.

For her part, the councillor for Health at Palma Town Hall recalled that three years ago the Town Hall turned Cala Estància into a smoke-free beach, and now this initiative is being extended to Molinar, a beach with a large number of families and children. It is one more step, he said, in the creation of smoke-free spaces.

Navarro recalled that Palma is a Child-Friendly City and having smoke-free beaches enables progress to be made in the prevention of addictions, especially aimed at young people. This initiative is in line with the Municipal Strategic Plan for the Prevention of Addictions approved by the City Council and is being developed with the support of organisations and associations. Navarro stressed the importance of working hand in hand with the Department of Health and Consumer Affairs, the Spanish Association Against Cancer, the establishments near the beach and other entities to consolidate smoke-free spaces in the city.

This is the fourth beach in Mallorca to be added to the programme this year, along with the beaches of Santa Ponça, La Romana-Peguera and es Carregador-Palmanova, all in Calvià.