In the Canary Islands, locals demand changes to manage the growing tourism crisis. Groups from La Palma, Tenerife, and Lanzarote call for sustainable tourism and better living standards amid concerns over housing and jobs. 

These demands come as the islands face increasing tourist pressure.

Canary Islands Crisis Deepens with New Demands from Locals
Tenerife, Spain
(Photo : Bastian Pudill/Unsplash)

Canary Islands Locals Demand Change

In response to the increasing pressure of tourism, the Canary Islands face renewed calls for reform. Local groups have articulated a set of demands to shift the current tourism model towards more sustainable and equitable practices. 

Twenty-seven groups from La Palma has been particularly vocal, challenging the approaches taken since the Tajogaite volcano eruption in 2021, which initially reduced visitor numbers.

While the number of tourists increases again, citizens have started raising their voices against insufficient affordable housing and jobs with the returning mass of visitors. 

These issues are powering protests across La Palma, Tenerife, and Lanzarote as locals urge for a restructuring in the tourism sector to prevent further damage to these islands' natural and social environments.

The manifestos issued by these groups call for improved water management, promotion of environmentally friendly tourism, and support for local trade and renewable energy initiatives. 

They stress that the true strength of the Canary Islands lies in their community and natural beauty, which are currently threatened by unsustainable tourist practices.

This situation is critical for the Canary Islands since local authorities and other stakeholders are under great pressure to implement decisive changes. 

While this ongoing crisis has pointed out major challenges presented by popular tourist destinations, it sets the stage for an even larger discourse on the effects of tourism worldwide.

Related Article: Balearic Islands Residents Protest Demand Control Over Tourism Growth

Tragic Death at Popular Tourist Spot

A British woman tragically lost her life after being swept into the sea by a powerful wave near the Ajuy Caves on Fuerteventura, one of the Canary Islands, last Thursday. 

The 32-year-old was visiting the popular tourist destination when the incident occurred, involving three other tourists who fortunately survived.

The group of tourists, all staying at the same hotel in Corralejo on the island's northeast coast, had gone out to view the area when caught off guard by the wave. While the other three younger tourists, from 18 to 26 years, could swim back ashore, the lady was not so fortunate.

Though two local fishermen and an off-duty firefighter plunged into the water in attempt to get her back on board, these efforts were in vain. She was pulled from the water by a private boat and then pronounced dead once she got to shore. 

Many people said it was a feeling of standing there, able to do nothing as it happened.

Quick responses came from Canary Islands emergency services following the alarm, but the result was heartrending for the woman's family and friends despite assisting the other group members. 

This incident is a very apt reminder of the forces of nature at the Canary Islands' spots of attraction in those places that see thousands yearly. Last year, another tourist had a narrow escape from a similar fate at this same location.

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