“Save Water” seal will distinguish tourist companies in the Algarve that save water

Certification is associated with a support program to finance the adaptation measures that companies implement

Photos: Hugo Rodrigues | Sul Informação

The objective is to promote water savings in hotels and in the tourism sector in general, offering, in return, a seal that recognizes the effort and contribution of companies to the regional goal of reducing water consumption in the region by 15%. urban sector.

The “Save Water” seal, which will attest that tourist companies in the Algarve are playing their role in the fight against water waste and in favor of the efficient use of this precious resource, was presented this Monday, March 18th, at the headquarters of the Algarve Tourism Region, in Faro, in a session attended by Nuno Fazenda, Secretary of State for Tourism.

To obtain the seal and the water efficiency certification it confers, partner companies commit to adopting, in a phased manner, 30 water saving measures, from a list of 60. If companies have already implemented measures included in the list, they can be included in the action plan, albeit with limitations.

According to André Gomes, president of Turismo do Algarve, what is at stake are «water efficiency measures that were worked on in a very pressing way, both from a technical point of view – here with a great contribution from the Energy Agency (Adene) - , or with sector representatives».

«Tourist accommodation companies have been involved since December, in many hours of working meetings with Adene», the partner association of Turismo do Algarve and Turismo de Portugal in this program.


André Gomes – Photo: Hugo Rodrigues | Sul Informação


At issue are water efficiency measures linked to devices (taps, shower heads and others), alternative sources, irrigation, swimming pools, equipment, cleaning, behavior and management and maintenance.

The 60 measures are divided into priority ones, which are those that “can give results in a more pressing and more immediate way”, which are 18 in total, and structuring ones (42), which are “those that will take longer to be implemented», according to André Gomes.

The latter, as they are more complex, are also those for which «support mechanisms were created, to a large extent, by Turismo de Portugal to help companies».

This support is divided into two lines, according to Carlos Abade, president of Turismo de Portugal: one dedicated exclusively to the Algarve, with an allocation of 10 million euros, and another nationwide, with 50 million euros, but which has extra advantages for companies that implement projects to promote water efficiency in the Algarve.

Exclusively for projects to be implemented in the Algarve region, the “+ Algarve Water Efficiency” line was created, to which micro, small and medium-sized companies can apply, as long as they are hotel establishments, rural tourism establishments or campsites and of caravanning.

In this line, which will be open continuously from April 1st until the grant ends, each company can submit an application with a maximum value of 50 thousand euros, benefiting from 50% non-refundable support.

The financing of this line will come from “Tourism of Portugal’s own capital”.


Carlos Abade – Photo: Hugo Rodrigues | Sul Informação


The other support line already existed and is called “Turismo + Sustentável”, aimed at SMEs, but also large companies.

In this case, it is a loan from the bank, with a guarantee from the State (80%), which will have to be repaid by the candidates, albeit with advantageous conditions. The maximum amount per application is 750 thousand euros.

In this program, there is a performance bonus that converts part of the value into non-refundable support, which, in the case of the Algarve and for operations linked to water efficiency, can reach 30% (in the rest of the country it is 20%).

This is a voluntary adherence measure, but André Gomes anticipates that there will be «a massive adherence, we hope, by tourist accommodation units in the region».

«It is with great pleasure that we note, in this process of preparing the seal model and the measures themselves, a very active participation on the part of tourist accommodation companies in the region, through the associations that represent them», states the president of tourism from the Algarve.

In the room were, moreover, representatives of the main associations in the sector, namely the Association of Hotels and Tourist Enterprises of the Algarve (AHETA), the Association of Hotel and Similar Industries of the Algarve (AIHSA) and the Hotel Association of Portugal (AHP) .

«Some of the companies are already implementing many of these measures. Be it the application of flow reducers on taps, changing the type of showers, reducing green spaces – and this, in fact, is a measure that we believe will be effective and will make a great contribution to the objectives we strive for. we proposed -, the fact is that every day we see companies and tourist enterprises in the region applying measures», reinforced André Gomes.

«I believe that today a very important step was taken towards affirming the Algarve as a sustainable destination on an international scale. The Algarve is a tourist destination of excellence and today it took another important step towards its reaffirmation or constitution as a sustainable destination, because there is a commitment here from several actors, local and regional entities, business and international institutions, for better management , savings and use of water», said the Secretary of State for Tourism.

Nuno Fazenda also highlighted the «mobilization of financial resources to support companies in the transition and adaptation to better savings and management of water use», as well as the awareness campaign by Turismo de Portugal to appeal to water savings, aimed at tourists foreign and national, which was also launched this Monday.


Photos: Hugo Rodrigues | Sul Informação



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