BLUE FLAG STANDARDS
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Context: Under the Integrated Coastal Zone Management Project, the Ministry of Environment, Forest & Climate Change (MoEFCC) has piloted Beach Environment & Aesthetic Management Service (BEAMS) Programme.
- Under this programme, various activities related to pollution abatement, beach awareness, aesthetics, safety, surveillances services and environment education, etc., have been done at identified beaches aimed to achieve international standards for Blue Flag Beach Certification.
- Total 10 beaches situated in 6 States and 3 Union Territories have been developed at par with best international beaches with safety and ecologically sustainable infrastructure, acceptable bathing water quality, self-sustaining energy supply and environmentally sound services/management measures.
- Beaches that have been conferred with internationally recognized Blue Flag Certification are:
- Shivrajpur, Devbhumi Dwarka District, Gujarat
- Ghoghla (Diu) Dadara Nagar Haveli and Daman & Diu
- Padubidri, Udupi District, Karnataka
- Kasarkod, Karwar District, Karnataka
- Kappad, Kozhikode District, Kerala
- Kovalam, Kanchipuram District, Tamil Nadu
- Eden, Puducherry District, Puducherry
- Rushikonda, Vishakhapatnam District, Andhra Pradesh
- Golden, Puri District, Odisha
- Radhanagar (Havelock), Andaman & Nicobar Islands
- This was launched by the Society of Integrated Coastal Management (SICOM) and the Union Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change (MoEFCC).
- The objectives of BEAMS program are to:
- Abate pollution in coastal waters,
- Promote sustainable development of beach facilities,
Protect & conserve coastal ecosystems & natural resources,
Strive and maintain high standards of cleanliness,
Hygiene & safety for beachgoers in accordance with coastal environment & regulations.
- It is an internationally recognised eco-label that is accorded based on 33 criterias. These criterias are divided into 4 major heads namely, Environmental education and information, Bathing water quality, Environmental management, Conservation and safety services in the beaches
- Blue Flag beaches are considered the cleanest beaches of the world
- It is accorded by the international jury composed of eminent members - United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), United Nations World Tourism Organisation (UNWTO), Denmark-based NGO Foundation for Environmental Education (FEE) and International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN).