In an effort to help us become more healthy AND keep our beaches in better condition and appearance the local authorities here have created a health and environmental protection programme called “smokeless beaches.”
The first beach where we can all benefit from a life without tobacco as smoking is prohibited is the little sweep of sand at Cala Estancia near to Can Pastilla. The no smoking area is intended to generate respect and responsibility among smokers and non-smokers for the enjoyment of families, couples and friends.
There have been various initiatives before this to try and get smokers to clean up after themselves and put their cigarette butts in ash trays which have been provided for them on the beaches.
You may not realise this, but it's not just the smoke which causes damage to us as;
Butts are made from a petroleum derivative, are not biodegradeable and can take up to 15 years to decompose in the sand.
Each butt can pollute up to 25 litres of water and have unpredictable consequences for plants and animals in the sea and coastline.
Their small size and weight makes it difficult for mechanical cleaners to remove them which increases the cost of cleaning enormously.
As you can see by the photo of the Brobdingnagian sized butts, sunflower seeds, and bottle tops of a previous campaign against beach litter, there's a tremendous environmental impact and it's a shame that a draconian measure like completely banning smoking has had to take place.
Having said that, as an ex-smoker of 45 years without a fag, I'm puritanically against tobacco and would be ecstatic to stretch out on a smoke free beach. How about you?