Thursday saw the launch of a campaign by Palma de Mallorca locals to restrict the number of cruise ships visiting the Spanish holiday island.
The group published their manifesto on the website You Move Europe some 20 groups and associations called on the Mallorcan authorities to limit the number of cruise ships arriving in the port to one per day.
“Three or four cruise ships accumulate at a time and unleash 15,000 people on the city,” Jaume Garau, head of environmental platform Palma XXI, told AFP.
The number of tourists arriving in Palma by cruise ship has jumped from half a million to nearly 1.2 million last year.
According to a recent study by the European Federation for Transport and Environment (T&E), Palma and Barcelona are the worst cities in Europe for cruise ship pollution.
The report highlighted the fact that last year cruise ships release four times the amount of pollutants in the air that all the cars registered in the city.
The group’s manifesto which makes a lot of sense for residents not gaining financially from the ships was immediately jumped on by business associations keen to point out the benefits to the local economy that the ships bring.
“It’s a type of tourism that consumes, that shops, goes to restaurants,” they said in a statement. “It’s a type of tourism that spends, and in a short time frame.”
This is just the latest protest against mass tourism that is not only ruining the way of life for locals in tourist hot spots but also pushing up the price of rents to the extent locals cannot live in the towns where they were born.