Archive for June, 2020

The fortnightly market returns to Albufeira, but with restrictions.

Jun 09 2020 Published by under Local News

The fortnightly market in Albufeira reopens next Tuesday, June 16, with a strict contingency plan that is based on access control, maintenance of sanitary rules imposed by the Directorate-General for Health and procedures for containerization and packaging of waste.

The Albufeira City Council announced that starting next Tuesday, June 16, regular visitors to the fortnightly market in Albufeira will be able to go shopping, now with other precautions but with all the security measures implemented to avoid the spread of the virus. The Market will take place at the usual site, in Caliços, on Estrada de Vale Pedras, on the first and third Tuesday of each month, from 8:30, am to 2:00 pm.

Rules were defined, both for marketers and consumers, in a work that is being carried out by various services of the Municipality, in collaboration with the Voluntary Firefighters of Albufeira, GNR and Local Health Authority. The articulation with DGS is guaranteed by the Municipal Civil Protection Service.

Access for consumers will be made next to the bus terminal and the secretariat of the Fair. People should queue outside the market, with a view to allowing counting by city officials, waiting for an indication to enter the premises. In addition, the use of a mask is mandatory, and all measures of social distance must be respected, namely avoiding a distance between people less than 2 meters, as well as the instructions given by security officers and municipal officials, who may, in a high concentration of people inside or non-compliance with the rules, choose to ask customers to leave the place or for the enclosure itself to close.

Despite all the security measures, the Albufeira City Council recommends that people from vulnerable groups do not visit the space.

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Tavira has the largest number of “zero pollution” beaches in the Algarve

Jun 09 2020 Published by under Lifestyle,Local News

Tavira is the regional leader in the number of beaches with «ZERO pollution», according to the list of 68 national bathing zones released by ZERO – Associação Terrestre Sustentável.

In 2020, beaches with «ZERO pollution» represent 11% of the total of 621 bathing areas in operation, an increase of 55 percentage points, plus 24 beaches, compared to the 44 classified last year, reinforced ZERO.

The Algarve has 11 beaches with this distinction, however, the municipality of Tavira, leads with four beaches: Barril, Cabanas, Tavira Island and Terra Estreita. The municipalities of Faro (Deserta, Culatra and Farol), Vila do Bispo (Castelejo, Cordoama and Martinhal), and Aljezur (Vale Figueiras), also received this distinction.

But what does it mean to be a ‘Zero Pollution Beach’?

The Association explains that, based on data requested from the Portuguese Environment Agency, they identified the beaches that, over the last three bathing seasons (2017, 2018 and 2019), not only always had an “EXCELLENT” rating, but also presented values ​​zero or below the detection limit in all analyzes carried out on the two microbiological parameters controlled and provided for in the legislation. “

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Portugal is the first EU country to receive ‘Safe Travel’ stamps

Jun 08 2020 Published by under COVID19,Lifestyle

Portugal has firstly received the ‘Safe Travel’ stamps aimed to relaunch the holiday sector safely and sustainably.

Released by the World Travel & Tourism Council the stamp intend not only to check destinations complying with hygiene and safety rules but also to reassure travellers concerned about contracting the virus. Consumers will see this certification as an official recognition and adoption of the sanitation measures in order to have a ‘safe’ experience.

As soon as WWTC will implement the health and hygiene protocols the stamp will be used for hotels, restaurants, airlines, cruise lines, tour operators, outdoor shopping and transportations.

Portugal demonstrated an active commitment in – safely – restart the tourism sector after being the most affected by this pandemic. On April 24 Turismo de Portugal already launched the Clean & Safe declaration reinforcing hygiene controls to business activities as well as giving tourists a sense of security.  

The Ministry of State, Economy and Digital Transition Rita Marques consider the stamps as the result of the outstanding efforts achieved by the country. 

“Portugal was a pioneer in launching the Clean & Safe seal. This seal from WTTC comes to reward the effort that has been made by everyone. The best destination in the world is also understood as the safest in the world “ said in a statement the Ministry. 

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Is plastic pollution getting worse due to masks and gloves?

Jun 05 2020 Published by under COVID19,Lifestyle

While masks and gloves are stopping the virus to be spread they might be the cause for another big problem

Since the worldwide lockdown began we gradually assisted to a revival of the natural world. Air is clearer, wild animals enjoyed the freedom of a quieter world and the wide hole in the ozone layer has – miracously – healed.

However, while environmentalists are thrilled of such pollution decrease during past months, another threat is looming ahead. 

This pandemic has produced an enormous amount of masks and gloves. The biggest concern is how people are wrongly disposing them contaminating either cities and oceans. 

The latest WWF report warned that “ “if just 1% of the masks were disposed of incorrectly and dispersed in nature, this would result in as many as 10 million masks per month polluting the environment.”

More than 50 countries have made compulsory to wear masks in public places. The World Health Organization urged the Government to ramp up production of protective equipments for health workers. 

Every month nearly 80 million masks are needed globally as well as 76 million of gloves and 1.6 face visors and goggles. Such production is necessary. 

The WWF stressed the point “Considering that the weight of each mask is about 4 grams, this would result in the dispersion of more than 40 thousand kilograms of plastic in nature”. Having people disposing of plastic masks and gloves across the world environmentalists are therefore fearing a serious challenge ahead. 

Moreover, as Portugal and other countries are reopening beaches, oceans and sea coasts are threatened to receive millions of plastic COVID-equipments this year. As already  8 millions of plastic trash sink yearly into the ocean, higher numbers are foreseen for the upcoming years. 

Although the trade association of European Plastics Converters urged EU legislation to postpone the Single-Use plastic directives due to the pandemic, the EU Commission spokesperson for environmental matters bounce back affirming it’s too early to estimate a real impact of plastic waste generated by the pandemic in 2020. 

Besides the official dispositions, each of us must make an effort to avoid this – other – consequence. If we adopt careful disposal of our masks the impact on nature will definitely be very minimal. 

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What has reopened after June 1st? See where you can go

Jun 03 2020 Published by under COVID19,Local News

The third phase of deconfinement is looming and from June 1st Portugal reopened additional activities you might enjoy. See what here.

As lockdown ease restrictions, cinemas, theatres, shopping malls, gyms and other cultural venues are currently getting on track. However, only 20 people are allowed to gather in such places whereas restaurants having opened since May 18 keep their capacity of about 50%, still.

Gyms will experience a drastic cut of their normal activities. Machines usage will only be of about 50% and showers are forbidden. People can enjoy 1 hour per day inside the gym while respecting social distancing of 4 sq metres.

Similarly, cinemas and theatres are opening as well as complying with restrictive measures. Beside sanitizing requirements, spectators must keep wearing masks and seat separately from each other unless your neighbour belongs to the same houseold of yours. 

Portugal is currently entering the ‘third phase’ of lockdown although there no yet provisions about bars, disco and outdoor events reopening. As long as there is no official provision it’s still assumed to revive such activities from September onwards. 

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