Operating Procedures on Beach Cleaning
The Maltese Islands’ beaches and seas are a very valuable resource, and of high environmental value. ERA’s Operating Procedures on Beach Cleaning are intended to guide site managers and beach cleaners in a practical manner on various beach cleaning operations and on the management of Posidonia oceanica wrack, so that such operations do not unduly impact the ecology of the beaches. Because seagrass is a natural and important part of the coastal ecosystem, it is recommended to be left in place whenever possible. When beach cleaning is deemed necessary, however, local conditions and management considerations must be fully understood and addressed before selecting appropriate techniques. When removing seagrass accumulations from a beach, as much as practically possible the lowest impact techniques available should be resorted to.
These operating procedures aim to attain a balance between keeping beaches clean for the enjoyment of the general public and protecting the ecology of these environmentally sensitive beaches. This document provides a framework within which the affected operators would know they can function, and consequently to be compliant even in terms of law, whilst safeguarding this sensitive facet of our environment. These Operating Procedures are concerned only with beach cleaning that consists of the removal of waste and litter from the beaches, and removal of Posidonia oceanica wrack accumulations, and do not cover other breach grooming activities or any form of engineering works.