NEWS

Greek beaches surf the crest of a wave

Greece’s tourism industry received another welcome boost yesterday as it enters its peak season. Almost 400 of the country’s beaches receiving an ecological seal of approval after fulfilling 27 criteria, including those for water quality, environmental management and safety. The tests were conducted under the Blue Flag Campaign, run by the independent Foundation for Environmental Education, which is responsible for inspecting thousands of beaches around the world. The Dodecanese islands boasted the most beaches with Blue Flags, with a total of 44, followed by Halkidiki with 34. The awards were given to 383 Greek beaches in total – five more than last year. Five marinas were approved, two fewer than in 2004. This comes less than a week after the EU found that 99.9 percent of all coastal bathing areas in Greece met with its mandatory cleanliness requirements.