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Halifax Waterfront Blue Flag certified for 7th year in a row

The international eco-certification was awarded to only 9 Canadian marinas this year. 
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Halifax waterfront (Meghan Groff/HalifaxToday.ca)

HALIFAX - The Halifax Waterfront has once again been Blue Flag certified.

The Waterfront marina has been re-certified Blue Flag, an international eco-certification for beaches and marinas, which its maintained each year since 2012. 

In order to be Blue Flag certified a beach or marina must demonstrate excellence in four areas: water quality, environmental education, environmental management, and safety and services.

Kelsey Scarfone, Program Manager for Blue Flag at Environmental Defence, says the certification recognizes environmental excellence for beaches and marinas.

"It's a way to distinguish [the] best of the best in terms of beaches and marinas that you'd want to visit," Scarfone said. 

Twenty-seven beaches and nine marinas in Canada have been certified this year, something Scarfone says beaches or marinas apply for. 

If the application is strong enough it is passed to an expert national jury and then on to an international jury for final review and certification. 

She says the certification is a factor for tourists looking at Nova Scotia.

"Having blue flags really sends the message that this beach, or marina in this case, is very well run and sustainable, and people want to be able to factor that in to the decisions they make as tourists when they're visiting new locations."

Scarfone says the Halifax Waterfront will be allowed to fly the Blue Flag, a sign to visitors that the marina is environmentally friendly.

"They want to know that their impact is low and that the places they're visiting are sustainably run. So this is a great way that people can know, across the world, when they see that blue flag they know the same strict criteria and strict process to be certified has been met."

There is also a Blue Flag info-board describing the program and detailing how the Waterfront is meeting Blue Flag standards.

She says that the Blue Flag is peace of mind for travellers.

"It takes the guesswork out for people."

- With files from Matthew Moore




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