FUERTEVENTURA (BIOSPHERE RESERVE) SAYS “NO” TO CENTRAL GOVERNMENT’S DECISION (SPAIN) TO ALLOW OIL EXPLORATION IN THE SEA

© Photos by ROBERTO ALBORGHETTI

Fuerteventura is one of the islands wich make the Canary archipelago, a set of islands whose climate, geological, marine and botanical peculiarities have set apart as an area of exceptional natural interest. In order to protect it, a law has been passed, the Law of  Natural Areas in the Canaries, limiting human activity in certain zones. These zones are divided into Nature and Rural Parks, Nature Reserves, Nature Monuments, Protected Landscapes, and Areas of Scientific Interest. In Fuerteventura these areas are the Corralejo, Lobos and Jandia Nature Parks, che Betancuria Rural Park, the Malpais de is Arena, Montaña de Tindaya, Caldera de Gairía, Cuchillos de Vigán, Montaña  Cardón and Ajuy Nature Monuments; the Maipais Grande and Valebrón Protected Landscapes, and the Playa del Matorral which is an Ares of Scientific Interest.

Fuerteventura is now facing central government’s decision (Spain) to allow oil exploration in the Canary Islands. The debate is open. And local people and associations are raising protests.

Natalia Evora, Environment and Trasports Councillor in Fuerteventura, said to “Fuerteventura Magazine Hoy” : “First of all we must remember that in 21st Century we must speak of energies that do not pollute and we therefore think oil has become an obsolete industry… We must take into account the great damage and risks that this would create in our marine element, for biodiversity and for tourism…The Islands that are Biosphere Reserves, such as Fuerteventura, are creating another energy model and not one that is already being eliminated in many countries because of the problems it has created… An oil spill would immediately close the desalination plants that provide the water we consume”.

Greenpeace told that the planned oil spill – located in deep waters, at 3000 meters – would required 500 boats to act immediately in order to contain it. Fuerteventura doesn’t have the structure to be able to defend itself immediately against such a disaster…   

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THE LAND OF ALOE VERA PLANTS / MY DAYS IN FUERTEVENTURA # 6

© Photos by ROBERTO ALBORGHETTI

 

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Aloe Vera plants ( Aloe Barbadensis Miller) have found in Fuerteventura the best climatic conditions of the world for their development. Conditions I’m enjoying during my stay in  Fuerteventura: clear sunlight, warm climate and scarce rain. You may see Aloe Vera along roads, in the gardens and in several plantations grewed up in the inner areas.

Aloe Vera is a plant from the family of the liliaceous like tha garlic or the onion. It is known since the ancient time for its medical effects. The pulp inside contains a great variety of active principals such as vitamins, minerals and aminoacids. The Aloe Vera is recommended for all type of affections of the skin. Due to its regenerative action, in record time it accelerates the recuperation of the skin and eases the pain.

FUERTEVENTURA, LAND OF ALOE VERA – PHOTOS BY ROBERTO ALBORGHETTI

At the weekly “mercadillo” (market) in Morro Jable I bought “Aloe Vera Gel” from “Absolut Aloe”, one of the local producers (www.absolutaloe.com) . A bottle of 250 ml. contains the extract of about 625 gr.of fresh leaves. They cultivate aloe in an ecologic way and their plantations are controlled by the Regular Council for Ecologic Agriculture of the Canary Government. To ensure maximum quality they sell directly from the producer straight to the consumer. In Fuerteventura you find Aloe Vera products in every stores or shops. Before to buy them, check quality and origins.

About its effects I may say that my skin has received immediate relief after sunburn. And some friends of mine at last solved problems about sun allergies.             

FUERTEVENTURA, ART ON THE ROADS: ROUNDABOUTS AS GALLERIES

© Photos by ROBERTO ALBORGHETTI

ROUNDABOUTS AS GALLERIES – FUERTEVENTURA 2012 – Phots by ROBERTO ALBORGHETTI – CAMINOS

In Fuerteventura local government and municipalities had a good idea. They have displayed beautiful and interesting sculptures at the most important roundabouts. So, while you’re driving along the main roads you have the pleasure to admire art installations which invite you to stop… It’s a sort of permanent gallery showing nice contemporary art made by local or international sculptors.

I saw fascinating pieces. But I was really struck by  “Caminos” made in 2007 by cuban artist Lisbet Fernandez Ramos and located at a roundabout at the entrance of Morro Jable town (Pajara municipality).

The artist created two different groups of kids who are scanning the sky (or the future…) It’s a really impressive scene that invites to slow down and think… And this is another surprise coming from Fuerteventura, wild and fascinating island.

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https://robertoalborghetti.wordpress.com/2013/06/06/fuerteventura-spain-seascape-stories-from-cracks-of-an-art-installation-but-its-a-waste-container/

https://robertoalborghetti.wordpress.com/2013/06/09/fuerteventura-canary-islands-that-blue-and-abstract-sea-more-images-from-the-waste-container/

NEW TRENDS: WRITING ON THE SAND WITH BLACK STONES / MY DAYS IN FUERTEVENTURA # 4

© Photos by ROBERTO ALBORGHETTI

Writing words and messages on the sand… It’s a funny game to do when we are on the beach. But water (and wind) arrive very soon to delate all we have written.

 

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What we build on the sand is usually a plan doomed to fail… We say so. Not in Fuerteventura, where we may write on the sand using  black volcanic stones.

 This is a sort of new trend along  the Island coasts. People write words, or love messages,  on the incredible dunes. Sand and stones to say something bound to remain… It’s so beautiful… And poetic.

NEW TRENDS: WRINTING ON THE SAND WITH BLACK STONES / PHOTO BY ROBERTO ALBORGHETTI

“VAMOS A LA PLAYA!”: WELCOME TO THE ENCHANTING BEACH SHOW / MY DAYS IN FUERTEVENTURA # 3

 © Photos by ROBERTO ALBORGHETTI

MY DAYS IN FUERTEVENTURA #3 – PHOTO BY ROBERTO ALBORGHETTI

Vamos a la playa!” Yes, let’s go to the beach!… The  greatest tourist attractions of Fuerteventura are undoubtedly its unparalleled beaches. Mile after mile of white, golden and black sands, making up a total of some 157 beaches, all bathed in crystalline turquoise-coloured waters.

MY DAYS IN FUERTEVENTURA #3 – PHOTO BY ROBERTO ALBORGHETTI

The beaches of Jandia, to the south east of the Jandia massif, are the longest in the Canary islands: their golden sands and placid waters stretch from Costa Calma, “Sotavento”, to Morro Jable, a nice town where we may find good hotels.  

MY DAYS IN FUERTEVENTURA #3 – PHOTO BY ROBERTO ALBORGHETTI

Also in Jandia, on the “Barlovento” coast, there is the beach of Cofete: more than 14 kms of wild beaches set in one of the most impressive geological landscapes of the whole island. In the northern area there are the beautiful beaches of El Cotillo and the enchanting dunes of Corralejo coast with its white sands.

MY DAYS IN FUERTEVENTURA #3 – PHOTO BY ROBERTO ALBORGHETTI

The protected natural area called the Playa del Matorral, Site of Scientific Interest (S.I.C., Sitio de Interés Científico) covers an area of 115.6 hectares. It is the only wetland in the Canary Islands included in the list of wetlands of international importance (RAMSAR Convention). It is a coastal region ecosystem, flooded periodically by the sea, coinciding with the high tides in the spring and autumn equinoxes. The aim of the S.I.C. is the protection of the habitat, the associated species and the landscape in general.

MY DAYS IN FUERTEVENTURA #3 – PHOTO BY ROBERTO ALBORGHETTI

Halophilic species, able to withstand the flooding of the tides, and predominant amongst the flora. In the fauna, the salt marsh stands out because of its potential value as a passage area for sea birds or limicoline birds. The turtles, sightings of cetaceans and the underwater beauty of the environment are also noteworthy.

Another enchanting show from…la isla bonita.

MY DAYS IN FUERTEVENTURA #3 – PHOTO BY ROBERTO ALBORGHETTI

LIVING ON A VOLCANIC LAND/ MY DAYS IN FUERTEVENTURA # 2

© Photos by ROBERTO ALBORGHETTI

In Fuerteventura (Canary Islands) the Jandia peninsula was formed through one of three volcanic edifices that created the Island: the stratovolcano of Jandia.

MY DAYS IN FUERTEVENTURA – PHOTOS BY ROBERTO ALBORGHETTI – 2012

Its emissions were very powerful and caused a widespread pilling up of lava flows that made up the most important terrains of the Island. The erosive agents are still re-modeling this terrain. The southern slope which starts at the Jandia mountain ridge is formed by a grouping of narrow, short and deep valleys that do not quite reach the sea.

MY DAYS IN FUERTEVENTURA – PHOTOS BY ROBERTO ALBORGHETTI – 2012

In Fuerteventura, water makes and marks the different colours of landscapes. On an island where so rarely we have rains, water desalination plants ensure life, to inhabitants and to flora and vegetation. Other differences are made by the sea. Various local species are endemic to the Jandia peninsula meaning it is the region with most biodiversity in the entire island.

MY DAYS IN FUERTEVENTURA – PHOTOS BY ROBERTO ALBORGHETTI – 2012

The area close to the lighthouse is inhabited by grouping of halophillic plants (extremophile organisms adapted to living in environments with high concentration of salt), such heath-leaved Sea-Heath and an antidiabetic medical plant (Plantigophyllum gaetulum) whose habitat is limited within the Canary Islands.

MY DAYS IN FUERTEVENTURA – PHOTOS BY ROBERTO ALBORGHETTI – 2012

The Mosquito Valley has a good representation of other endemic species found only in the south of Fuerteventura and a plant symbol of the island, Jandia spurge (Euphorbia handiensis). A perennial shrub Launaea arborescens, Common Ice Plant, Canary Island tamarisks (Tamarix  canariensis), Poenix canariensis palm tree and the tree tobacco (also uncorrectly known as Mustard tree, Nicoriana glauca) all introduced to the island and can also be encountered along our routes.

MY DAYS IN FUERTEVENTURA – PHOTOS BY ROBERTO ALBORGHETTI – 2012