Blue Flag status goes to…

Muizenberg and Fish Hoek were awarded Blue Flag status for the summer season with Seaforth becoming a pilot Blue Flag beach with the possibility of being awarded full status next year.

They were among the 10 Cape Town beaches to be awarded Blue Flag status for the period starting December 1 and ending January 31 for Fish Hoek, and ending March 31 for Muizenberg.

The Blue Flag is an international accreditation awarded to beaches that display excellence through meeting 33 criteria covering four categories including: environmental education and information, water quality, environmental management and safety and services.

Participation in this international programme is voluntary and the status indicates that the beaches all have their own environmental education programmes, have bathing water of the highest standard, are clean, have adequate ablution facilities and parking, are environmentally sound, are safe and secure to visit, and adhere to international safety and tourism standards.

“We are preparing for 1 December, which is the start of the Blue Flag season,” said Anda Ntsodo, City of Cape Town’s mayoral committee member for community services.

“Some of the preparation which is under way includes conducting maintenance and upgrades to facilities, ensuring that the environmental inte-
grity of sites is intact, placing lifeguards on duty to patrol these beaches, sampling the water for quality control pur-
poses which will resume soon, dune rehabilitation, alien vegetation eradication and –
conducting some of the compulsory Blue Flag environmental education programmes.”

The National Department of Tourism is funding the Tourism Blue Flag Project, which is a national employment creation programme that will employ 50
extra persons to work on the Blue Flag
Beaches, in an effort to complement and enhance tourism eff-
orts.