Nueva Canarias Backs 20A Protests in Tenerife “For a Tourism Model with Boundaries”

Valentín Correa, the secretary of Organization and spokesperson for Nueva Canarias-Bloque Canarista (NC-BC) in Tenerife, confirmed on Friday the full support of the island’s organization for the demonstrations on the 20th of April in Tenerife, called under the slogan of The Canary Islands have a limit where organized civil society “the only thing it rejects is a model without limits.”

Valentín Correa pointed out that Nueva Canarias has always advocated for initiating a discussion on the current model, which “is causing great distress on the island of Tenerife,” and has consistently provided a well-founded viewpoint on the challenges impacting the entire society.

These include endless traffic congestion, water scarcity for the population and the primary sector, the recent water emergency declaration, uncontrolled discharges polluting the marine environment, housing accessibility issues due to holiday rentals, environmental degradation through outdated urban development, and overcrowding in natural and protected areas.

Nueva Canarias has raised concerns about the “irresponsible” actions of an established political class focused on perpetuating a model that benefits a select few. For instance, the construction of the new El Mojón city in Arona with over 9,000 beds received strong opposition from Nueva Canarias due to its potential negative impact on the island’s socio-economy.

Valentín Correa explained that Nueva Canarias has put forward essential proposals, including a second island-based moratorium, calling for the rehabilitation of outdated tourist areas, upgrading accommodation facilities to prioritize quality over quantity, staff training, sector decarbonization and digitalization, regulation of holiday rentals, and the introduction of a tourist tax.

Additionally, initiatives like designating stressed residential zones in the Canary Islands to apply rent reference rates, delaying holiday rentals until a forthcoming law is approved to prevent a sudden surge in requests, have been championed by the NC-BC parliamentary group to address housing issues. Correa warned that the activity of vacation rentals, accounting for 37% of the existing 550,000 tourist beds in the Canaries, registered 56,000 new beds in the past year alone.

“There is no tourismphobia in Tenerife. We should not vilify tourists, the majority of the business community, or citizens demanding a reformed tourism model,” stated Correa, emphasizing the need for a sustainable tourism approach that considers capacity, sharing the benefits, and prioritizing the local population.

According to the island leader of NC-BC, “tourism is vital for Tenerife’s future,” but it must be sustainable, controlled, inclusive, and benefit the local community.

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