New environmental rules for beach-front hotels in Abu Dhabi

A new guide, Management of Beach Water Quality for Human Health at Abu Dhabi Hotels, was published by the Abu Dhabi Tourism and Culture Authority with the support of the Environment Agency - Abu Dhabi (EAD).

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Beach-front hotels in Abu Dhabi will now have to adhere to new procedures ensuring the cleanliness of marine waters.

A new guide, Management of Beach Water Quality for Human Health at Abu Dhabi Hotels, was published by the Abu Dhabi Tourism and Culture Authority with the support of the Environment Agency - Abu Dhabi (EAD).

The new rules will apply to 24 hotels and resorts in the emirate, out of which 13 are on Abu Dhabi island.

“Abu Dhabi is blessed with many beautiful beaches. As with other beaches around the world, there is the possibility that they may be affected by pollution and so we must be prepared to deal with this situation, however uncommon it is,” said Nasser Al Reyami, Director Standards, Regulations’ and Licensing at the Tourism Authority.

The 28-page guide explains how to manage pollution incidents, identifying specific roles and responsibilities and detailing a nine-step procedure for the development of beach water quality monitoring programmes. Ultimately it aims to guarantee the health of hotel guests.

“It will provide a higher standard for public health than the privately-run ‘Blue Flag’ programme which some hotels have voluntarily adopted,” said Mr Al Reyami.

The EAD is the organisation responsible for monitoring water quality at recreational beaches in the emirate.

“In 2013 we worked alongside our partners to reduce and mitigate pressure on Abu Dhabi’s marine waters by implementing the Marine Water Quality Protection Plan. This year, by unifying the monitoring procedures and sampling methods across the emirate through these newly published guidelines, we all now have more reliable and consistent data about our beaches to base decisions on,” said Shaikha Al Hosani, Director of Environmental Monitoring and Analysis at EAD.

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