Marina Punat raises the Blue Flag

Raising the Blue Flag in Marina Punat, Croatia.

The Blue Flag is a well-known award across the world, providing a reliable guide to compliance with a series of standards on beaches, marinas, and tourism boats. The focus on environmental education is increasingly important as marinas transition towards better resource sustainability and ocean stewardship. Within TransEurope Marinas, many members have flown the Blue Flag for decades and marine sustainability is a topic being explored and developed across different programmes.

Marina Port Zélande, a long-standing member of TransEurope Marinas and located on the Grevelingenmeer in the Netherlands, announced this season that they had received their 31st Blue Flag, one of just a handful of marinas in the world that can count on displaying this award consecutively for over three decades. Indeed, the Blue Flag, like TransEurope Marinas, was founded just over 35 years ago, making Marina Port Zélande an impressive example of a marina that has grown and developed alongside the evolution of the Blue Flag.

Marina Manager Peter de Regt described how the symbol of the Blue Flag, present throughout the marina, contributed to a high level of environmental awareness amongst the marina team, together with visiting and resident boaters. He emphasised the introduction of nature RIB safaris as part of their education programme, reinforcing the link between environmental education and waters sports.

International Blue Flag Director Johann Durand shared his appreciation for the new milestone:

Earning the Blue Flag for 31 consecutive years signifies a remarkable commitment to environmental excellence. This achievement, particularly noteworthy for a sector not typically reliant on such accolades due to an existing high demand, demonstrates exceptional leadership in sustainable practices at the local level.

Marina Punat in Croatia is another prime example of a Blue Flag Marina, having been awarded the accolade for a total of 27 years. Going significantly beyond the basic requirements, they actively promote innovative projects that contribute to the preservation of the coastal environment.

B. Renata Marević, CEO of Marina Punat, commented:

Marina Punat takes great pride in earning the Blue Flag. Since 1998, we have embraced this prestigious recognition as a guiding principle, safeguarding the natural beauty of our land and waters for future generations and elevating the overall marina experience for our residents.

Safety and innovation have proven to be the key drivers for Marina Punat with the development of digital systems for data management, firefighting and energy management, which reduce intervention time in event of an incident. Sustainable and green technologies were introduced early on, with the marina presently working towards covering a minimum of 40% of energy use via a solar power plant in the marina, reducing carbon dioxide emissions by approximately 13 tCO2eq. per year.

Blue Flag is currently preparing for new criteria, addressing climate action, biodiversity protection and pollution management in line with the Foundation for Environmental Education’s GAIA 20:30 strategy. With an additional review of the basic pillars of accessibility, safety, and education, the new criteria are expected to be launched towards the end of 2025.

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