The Balearic Port Authority approved a new law for Port Palma de Mallorca. For the first time ever, it includes measures to protect Posidonia meadows and anyone who drops anchor on the seagrass could be fined up to EUR 30,000.
Ships will be allowed to anchor in 2 distinct zones just 300 m off the coast of Palma between Can Pere Antoni beach and Gros torrent's mouth.
Vessels that are less than 500 tons have to use the area closest to land. All boats with higher tonnage have to anchor in the zone furthest away.
There is also a defined area for vessels transporting dangerous goods, the larger the risk, the further away they will be from the coast. All ships must have permission to enter the zones which have been set up.
Dropping anchor in zone 1, inside the port and anywhere on Posidonia meadows is already strictly forbidden. Anchoring and boats, ships, and naval devices in the access channel to the port other than by navigation in/out of the port are prohibited, although boats responding to emergencies are still allowed in the prohibited areas but only for the emergency's duration.
Dropping anchor in the access channel or inside the port and anchoring vessels with dangerous merchandise outside the allowed zone are considered serious infractions and result in fines of up to EUR 180,000. Mooring in prohibited areas can now result in penalties of up to EUR 90,000 and dropping anchor in other areas without proper authorization is fined up to EUR 60,000.
The Balearic Port Authority recently announced that the port of Palma had joined “Cruise 2030 Call for Action’ in a bid to shape the future of the European cruise industry. Representatives of the major cruise ports in Europe joined the Working Group in Venice. All participants agreed on the importance of the labour and economic aspects of the cruise industry and the need to reduce or eliminate the impact that cruise vessels have on port cities and the burdens they put on resources.
The group's members are putting together a working paper to negotiate with the shipping companies, that will be presented at the next summit of port authorities in Palma de Mallorca in January 2020.