The Blue Flag is a certification by the Foundation for Environmental Education (FEE) that a beach, marina or sustainable boating tourism operator meets its stringent standards. FEE is based in Copenhagen.
The Blue Flag is a trademark owned by FEE which is a not-for-profit, non-governmental organisation consisting of 65 organisations in 60 member countries in Europe, Africa, Oceania, Asia, North America and South America.
The Blue Flag is sought for beaches, marinas and sustainable boating tourism operators as an indication of their high environmental and quality standards.
Chandrabhaga beach on the coast of Konark has become Asia’s first to get the Blue Flag certification.
Criteria for awarding a Blue Flag
To achieve the Blue Flag standards, a beach had to strictly comply with 33 environment and tourism-related conditions.
FEE’s Blue Flag criteria include standards for water quality, safety, environmental education and information, the provision of services and general environmental management criteria.
To achieve the Blue Flag standards, a beach must be plastic-free and equipped with a waste management system. Clean water should be available for tourists, apart from international amenities. The beach should have facilities for studying the environmental impact around the area.