Porto Santo is now a UNESCO Biosphere Reserve.
In a press statement, the Mayor of Porto Santo, Idalino Vasconcelos, said “it is an honor to be present at the official recognition that this land, of the island of Porto Santo, has been elevated to the status of a UNESCO Biosphere reserve. It is the recognition of the potential of this small territory, its beach of special sands made up of the remains of marine creatures, unique and rare in the world, of our sea, of our natural and cultural heritage, of our biodiversity, of our geology and of all aspects of our identity.”
The Mayor thanked the Regional Government and the Regional Secretary for the Environment for “their vision, experience, work and continuous support throughout the application process, together with the MaB (Unesco, man and the biosphere programme) Committee.” He went on to thank all promoters of the candidacy for “their dedication and competence, making this result possible today before all of us. We are grateful to the Association of Folklore Group of Porto Santo, Madeira’s Regional Energy Agency, the Environment Agency, and the Institute of Forests and Nature Conservation, IP-RAM.”
Speaking on behalf of the people of Porto Santo, he also took the opportunity to praise UNESCO’s “excellence of work” in the search for peace between nations, in the defense of human rights and in the conservation of the Earth, “extolling the values of the bio and geodiversity of our planet.”
“We look forward to showing Porto Santo to the world. Our beach bathed by clear waters. We look forward to showing you our beach bathed by clear waters, our stunning landscapes, our open spaces and the hills that surround our island. We want to show the world our folklore, our gastronomy, our people and our history of resilience, struggle and achievements. Every day I wake up and feel proud of this island, which emerged from the depths of the Atlantic ocean some 18 million years ago and has since developed its own unique biodiversity, full of singularities dictated by the isolation of the islands.”
Concluding the mayor believes that “a better Porto Santo is possible and that the worldwide recognition granted by UNESCO will open new doors and provide new opportunities and create new challenges for the population. “Today is a big day. It is the day on which the island of Porto Santo welcomes this international recognition with open arms and continues its journey towards a stronger and safer sustainable development.”
info at madeira-weekly.com