Photography: José Guerra
The management plan for the Ericeira World Surfing Reserve (WSR) was approved in June by three associations (Association of the Friends of Baía dos Coxos, Ericeira Surf Club and SOS – Save Our Surf) together with the Mafra City Council for the 2018-19 biennial.
According to Pedro Bicudo (from SOS), the document is “the result of a lot of field work, many studies, many meetings, some with intense debates, and combines the vast surfing and environmental experience of surfers’ associations with the resources, the experts media and the implementation capacity of the Mafra City Council.”
Symbolically, it was on the World’s Oceans Day (June 8) that this 61-page document was presented. Besides presenting the Ericeira World Surf Reserve, its location and wave description, the plan presents a strategic vision for the future of the Ericeira World Surf Reserve prepared by the Restricted Council of the Municipal Council for the Management of the Ericeira WSR.
Pedro Bicudo: this management plan is very important
The statement released by SOS – Save Our Surf contains a kind of message: “We celebrate the World’s Oceans Day and hope that our efforts will be fruitful for the sake of surfing and the environment.”
According to the head of SOS – Save the Surf, “this management plan is very important because it identifies threats to the quality of the surf and the environment in the Ericeira World Surfing Reserve and proposes solutions to these problems.”
Among the various “weaknesses and threats” mentioned in the document, the main are the “lack of a legal status of the Reserve concept”, the “lack of specific funding for the implementation and maintenance of the Reserve”, “increased urban and tourism pressure in the area classified as Reserve”, the “absence of a local management model that considers the existence of the Reserve” and the “unrestrained growth of surf schools without any regulation. ”
The current situation of the tourism sector in Portugal, combined with the increasing popularity of Surfing, and the international recognition of national waves has shaped the social and economic activity of Ericeira in recent years, leading to an increase in the number of surfers, to the creation of surfing schools and the development of a relevant turnover associated to the sport. Due to all these reasons, it is increasingly urgent to take measures to preserve this unique collective heritage.
This is a further step to give practical consistency to the Ericeira Surf Reserve.
This will be a further step to give practical consistency to the Ericeira World Surf Reserve, after the implementation in January 2017 of the Regulation of the Municipal Council for the Management of the Ericeira WSR.
Esta publicação também está disponível em | This article is also available in: Portuguese (Portugal)