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Lobos - only 200 visitors at the same time
#1
La Oliva is going to limit number of visitors to Lobos island to 200 at the same time. The daily average of visitors is right now above 1,500 (almost double over the weekends) and it looks like this is going to change rapidly from January 2019. 


Google translate of rtvaguacabra:

The Island Corporation has carried out an intense work with the City Council of La Oliva, the Demarcation of Coasts, Port Authority and people linked to the islet
The Cabildo of Fuerteventura will start, starting in the first half of January 2019, the control over the carrying capacity of the islet of Lobos, currently established at 200 visitors in the Governing Plan for Use and Management of the islet of Lobos. The Cabildo de Fuerteventura, in coordination with the City Council of La Oliva, the Demarcation of Coasts in the Canary Islands and the Port Authority of Las Palmas, as responsible for the dock of Lobos, has carried out in the last months an intense work always in contact with owners of the boats and people historically linked to the islet of Lobos, with the aim of adopting a set of actions that guarantee the preservation of this unique space that it represents within its natural park qualification.
Thus, they have been articulating measures first by the City of La Oliva on the control of shipments closing access to the small port of the islet of Lobos. In addition, the Port Authority of Las Palmas is about to reinforce the wharf of the islet of Lobos and an improvement that makes it more accessible, more comfortable and more secure.
The Cabildo de Fuerteventura, for its part, is processing a tax ordinance that will allow charging a small fee for access and enjoyment of the islet of Lobos. The collection will go to conservation work, cleaning and monitoring of this natural space.
The Master Plan for Use and Management of the islet of Lobos has estimated the carrying capacity according to the characteristics of this natural space, the fragility of the resources and the frequency of the visit, considering an approximate limit of 200 simultaneous visitors as acceptable. At this moment, the revision of this loading capacity is being processed in the Insular Commission of Environmental Evaluation.
These measures allow, in short, the enjoyment of the islet of Lobos compatible with the preservation of the natural park so that this unique space is preserved.
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#2
Good plan La Oliva, keep Lobos special for people who enjoy its lack of facilities and beauty.
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#3
That is going to create one hell of a queue at the docks though isn’t it !! They will either have to limit the number of boats leaving Corri or limit the numbers docking, either way gonna be some angry punters. IMO  Rolleyes Rolleyes
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#4
I predict that the cost of a trip over will multiple by a factor of about 10!!!!
25/75 Birmingham/El Cotillo. Cool
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#5
(12-12-2018, 05:56 PM)Cotillo_Tom Wrote: I predict that the cost of a trip over will multiple by a factor of about 10!!!!
I'm sure it will, the demand will be pretty high.
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#6
(12-12-2018, 04:35 PM)Spitfire58 Wrote: That is going to create one hell of a queue at the docks though isn’t it !! They will either have to limit the number of boats leaving Corri or limit the numbers docking, either way gonna be some angry punters. IMO  Rolleyes Rolleyes

Perhaps you've just explained why it's necessary, Spitfire68.
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#7
(12-12-2018, 07:53 PM)waggy Wrote:
(12-12-2018, 04:35 PM)Spitfire58 Wrote: That is going to create one hell of a queue at the docks though isn’t it !! They will either have to limit the number of boats leaving Corri or limit the numbers docking, either way gonna be some angry punters. IMO  Rolleyes Rolleyes

Perhaps you've just explained why it's necessary, Spitfire68.

Wasn’t saying anything about whether it was necessary or not waggy. Haven’t been up there so no clue. 
What I was getting at was it was going to take some planning to avoid a fiasco. 
There must be a multitude of boats up there doing organised trips plus any & all day boaters/jet skiers/kayakers etc. 
Hell of a lot of planning or angry people
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#8
(12-12-2018, 08:11 PM)Spitfire58 Wrote: Wasn’t saying anything about whether it was necessary or not waggy. Haven’t been up there so no clue.
What I was getting at was it was going to take some planning to avoid a fiasco.
There must be a multitude of boats up there doing organised trips plus any & all day boaters/jet skiers/kayakers etc.
Hell of a lot of planning or angry people
I guess the tour operators will try to be there early in the morning or will have to call ahead. Afternoon trips will be quite a headache because it'll be next to impossible to predict how long will people stay in the island. Unless some time restricted tickets will be introduced(?). We simply have to wait and see.

(12-12-2018, 08:11 PM)Spitfire58 Wrote: Haven’t been up there so no clue.
Go there before the end of this year if you can. It's definitely worth it.
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#9
Translated interview with Natalia Évora @ www.diariodefuerteventura.com

-One of the hottest issues in environmental matters is how the management of Isla de Lobos is resolved. The Cabildo has confirmed that from mid-January the load capacity established in the Master Plan for Use and Management (PRUG) will be enforced. What is the current situation?

-The Use and Management Master Plan has been approved since 2006 and there is the cargo capacity of Lobos. When it was approved it was a time of less visitors than at present, the Cabildo made an annual calculation and in that way the average of 200 people per day was never surpassed at the end of the year. It is true that in the last three years the arrival of visitors has increased, especially in summer, with a little lack of control and with failures in the safety of the bathing areas. When the current PRUG was approved, the loading capacity was fixed taking into account that there were two boats that made four journeys a day and that each transported about 25 people. This was estimated then but it is not real, because the environmental values of the Island were not being evaluated.

- What is the Cabildo going to do now?

-We have decided to modify the load capacity, taking into account the infrastructures, the areas of restricted use and those of general use. In 2016, the study was presented to modify the Master Plan, which offered three alternatives: to remain as is, another proposal for the capacity to load 704 people and another proposal for more than 1,000, with recommendations to improve services. The study is inclined to the second option, but the one that comes out at the end may be that or not. Before, the capacity to modify the Master Plan was the Government and now corresponds to the Cabildo.

-And now that it is not in the Government but in the Cabildo where the modification of the Lobos Master Plan has to be resolved, what is blocking its processing?

- In principle it is not that it is blocked. The legislation supports us to make the modification, but before we had to create the environmental body of the Cabildo, the document was corrected and sent to it. It has just been accepted for processing. Now it will go out to consult of the different institutions and it is necessary to make a public exhibition. All this takes a while. I do not want to venture to say dates, but at least half a year.

-The boat traffic is not the same as that of 12 years ago, when the Lobos Master Plan was approved. How is it going to be controlled that the load capacity is met? It has transpired that there have been warnings about non-compliance with the regulations ...

-It is true that there have been a series of warnings that we have to apply the regulations and that we can not wait. What we have done is set up a very simple system. The rule says that there can be 200 people simultaneously. We have applied two time slots, a criterion to gain capacity. These time slots are from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. and from 2 a.m. to 6 p.m. In each of these bands, 200 people can go. They are 400 a day in total, but they will never be simultaneously. The influx will be controlled with a system, which we have already explained to the boats, which can provide suggestions.

- How will that system be?

-The user must acquire an authorization from the Cabildo with his name and DNI, individually, which will be provided through a specific web page. First you have to acquire the authorization, for now it will have to be done three days before the visit, so as not to block the system at the beginning. With the authorization, the visitor goes to the shipping company or to the boat that he considers to go to Lobos. The Cabildo can not regulate the boats because they do not have the skills to do so. What we will do is put personnel on the island, with a control system, validating that the visitor has the authorization and the ticket for that day and that time slot. You can also go with a private boat, it is a decision of the user, not the Cabildo, but the authorization will be necessary in any case.

- This system is going to suppose an added cost for the visitor?

-We've commissioned a rate study. At the beginning it will not be charged, but in the future it will be done to compensate for the pure and hard management expenses that the Cabildo has, for surveillance, cleaning or maintenance. The objective is to reach the summer with approved rates, in which residents are differentiated from those who are not or with different prices for excursions. It is not an ecotax, which would respond to a deeper debate that we do not have right now on the table.

-Does the Cabildo have the approval of the shipping companies?

-Obviously, the companies that engage in this activity are angry. Many expect to have economic problems, because it will go from having a volume of visitors not controlled to having a control and an influx quite downward. What we have tried, although they are unhappy and quite annoying with us, is to explain that this is the norm since 2006 and to warn them with enough time, so that they are aware that this will come and they will not have major problems. Not that they agree, but seeing the circumstances have given us some suggestions.

-What will happen to the people who own some type of building in Lobos? Are they included in the number of visitors? Is there a solution for them to spend the night, as they have been doing?

-They are completely different situations from the visitors, but it is true that those who have buildings in Lobos are affected. The current Master Plan is quite clear in that sense: you can not stay overnight, that is obvious. As Cabildo we can not establish differences [when it comes to complying with the load capacity] because the regulations do not contemplate it. If not, we would do it, of that there is no doubt. Regardless of whether the Master Plan is modified, as the Cabildo is processing, there is the Law of Coasts, and the whole Island must be taken into account that it is terrestrial maritime public domain.

-It is to say, that although a new Master Plan for Wolves is being processed, can the City Council not establish unilaterally that it is possible to spend the night on the Island?

- In principle no, because we would go against the Law of Coasts, that is quite restrictive. We have provoked a meeting between all the administrations involved for January, with the intention of clarifying the possibilities that the law exceptionally contemplates and how far we can go, and grabbing on to it. It has been proposed to declare buildings of Cultural Interest (BIC) or a similar figure, to protect them, but it would have to be Costas who determines that to maintain the buildings they can be given a certain use. We must fight because they have values and demonstrate that their situation fits in the legal framework, but without going against the regulations.

-The Cabildo has tried to order activities that generate an impact on the territory and the environment, through ordinances, such as to regulate the movement of quads and reduce it to a dozen routes. At what stage is that regulation?

-That activity was causing a great impact and obvious environmental damage, due to lack of control, because we did not know where they had to move. The Land Law allowed us to approve a network of tracks and that is why the Cabildo intervenes and takes out that ordinance, which is initially approved. There have been allegations and some of them suggest that an environmental study of the regulations should be carried out. The environmental body of the Cabildo has already reported that the ordinance can be carried out and only needs to go to full to be approved definitively and, from there, put it in motion.

-The institutions approve a large amount of regulations, such as the ordinance of quads, and then there is the most complicated phase, which is the application phase. What is needed to ensure that it is met?

-In this period we have gained experience because we are applying something similar within the Jandía Natural Park. It is very similar to what we have taken for the whole Island, with schedules or maximum number of vehicles. The distribution of the routes and their slots will be done by lot if there are many companies. What is clear is that we are going to try that the regulations that are approved do not die. The control is complicated because there are many tracks and slots, so in addition to the agents of the Environment, collaboration has been requested with the local Police and the Civil Guard. Because if not, we do not arrive.

- Does Environment count with the necessary resources for surveillance?

-We have eight Environment agents, who are there to ensure that all the regulations are complied with and that they can punish if they are not respected. They will cover three more seats of agents. We also have six active guards, who can report. We are sure that we are short and we have to increase the workforce, because not only do they monitor protected natural areas, but compliance with the Fisheries Act and we also act when there are infractions in the public domain. Coordination with the municipalities is important, because they are very close to the problems and bear fruit. For example, in the monitoring of shellfishing, as has happened with the Local Police of Pájara, where the collaboration has worked very well.

-Other island ordinance, even of greater draft, is the one that aims to regulate the implementation of renewable energy facilities, in view of the dispersion throughout the project's geography. He comes late?

-The powers to authorize wind farms are from the Government of the Canary Islands and if you declare them of general interest it does not matter if the Cabildo says that a certain project is incompatible with the type of land on which you want to install. We must make it clear that we defend alternative energies, which are a demand and a claim forever. But there has been a lot of snacking in the territory because it does not have a definitive instrument that it orders. With the ordinance will be established which areas do not want to be modified. It is clear that protected natural spaces are left aside, and areas of high environmental value should also be excluded. The logical thing is that these energy installations are in areas close to where they are consumed and that there is not so much dispersion. Projects that already have a license will not be able to intervene, because otherwise the Government would have a problem, but for the rest we want the minimum requirements to be taken into account, to avoid virgin territory being invaded or to generate a Strong impact.
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#10
The Cabildo of Fuerteventura enables a web page for reservations to be made in two shifts and with a limit of 200 people in each

During the first fifteen days the permit issuance system will work in test mode to access the Natural Park

The Cabildo of Fuerteventura informs that, starting next January 15, anyone interested in visiting the Islote de Lobos Natural Park must previously request an authorization through an online permit issuance system, through the link https://permissiondevisitaisladelobos.entrees.es or the Environment area of the Cabildo website, www.cabildofuer.es.

In accordance with the Master Plan for the Use and Management of Islote de Lobos, depending on the characteristics of the environment, the carrying capacity of this natural space must be limited to 200 simultaneous visitors. To meet the permitted capacity, the Cabildo has established this system online.

According to the president of the Cabildo, Marcial Morales, "compliance with the regulations of the Master Plan for the Use and Management of Islote de Lobos requires this type of measure that makes it possible to combine the full enjoyment of the natural area with its correct preservation".

The Minister of Environment, Natalia Évora, emphasizes that "during the first fifteen days, that is, until January 30, we will find ourselves in a provisional trial period, with the aim of resolving the small incidents that may occur in the system".

The ticket can be obtained only three days before the scheduled date of the visit. Each visitor may request permission for up to three people per day and time slot, establishing a morning schedule from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. (200 concurrent visitors) and an afternoon schedule from 2 p.m. to 6 p.m. (200 concurrent visitors).

In the authorization, the identification data of the visitor (name, surname, ID, passport), the date of the visit and the chosen time will be collected. Once the data and the number of permits you wish to obtain have been entered, the user will access a link where you can download the authorizations, which will also be sent to the email.

For its part, the validation of the permits will be carried out by personnel of the managing body in the Islote de Lobos Natural Park. The authorization can be presented in print or with the QR code on any mobile phone. The Island Corporation also reminds that people who do not have the corresponding permit or exceed the time limit are exposed to the corresponding penalty.

A link to request the cancellation of the permit is also available to users, through https://entrees.es/solicitud_de_devolucion.

At the time of posting this I have not been able to access the ticket request link or see anything other than proposal docs on the Cabildo site - presumably it will go live on 12th Jan, 3 days before the first ticket date.
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