Sustainable Development Success Stories

Calvià Declaration on Tourism and Sustainable Development in the Mediterranean

Location  Calvià, Mallorca, Spain
Responsible Organisation City of Calvià, Mallorca.

The city of Calvia' invited 490 political leaders, decision makers, tourism managers from Mediterranean local authorities, and other multi-stakehoders to participate to the International Conference on Tourism and Sustainable Development in the Mediterranean (April 1997). The participants approved the Calvià declaration in recognition of the efforts and the achievements of several co-operation programmes in the region addressing the challenge of new policies and strategies, such as the Mediterranean Action Plans, the Tourism Charter (Casablanca 1993) included in the Barcelona Euromediterranean Declaration (November 1995) and Agenda 21.

The declaration focused on:

  • Tourism as a generator of development in the Mediterranean

  • Different situations and common objectives of tourism development

  • Sustainable development with equality

  • Integration of sustainability in working programmes

  • Active participation by all stakeholders

  • Initiation of Local Agenda 21 processes

  • Stimulation of co-operation among all stakeholders.

Issues Addressed
Results Achieved
  • Changed current approach in programmes and tourism products to ensure that the region pursues the spirit of sustainability.

  • Considered the limits of carrying capacity of the environment.

  • Used Local Agenda 21 process and developed long-term comprehensive and sustainable local action plans that take into account all sectors of the community and create a common consensus and vision for the future, with the commitment of National governments.

  • Created awareness-raising campaigns for cultural and environmentally-sound tourism concepts for the benefits of the region’s communities. The region calls upon various stakeholders in the tourism industry to support these programs and strategies for achieving sustainability, through promotion of education for visitors.

  • Created and promoted the use of tools to foster the implementation and management of responsible and environmentally-friendly tourism, such as eco-audits, labels, awards, dissemination of Good Practices, capacity building programs, indicators and monitoring systems.

  • Established partnerships between local government and other sectors of the community (such as citizens’ groups, non-governmental organisations, educational institutions, craft and industry, trade unions, and others), when working towards sustainable plans and the conservation of the region’s limited resources, in line with the Call for action for Mediterranean Cities (Rome, November 1995).

Lessons Learned

Tourism is an opportunity but is also a threat, if not managed appropriately. In the emerging tourism destinations, it is essential that sustainable development initiatives be prepared to prevent the deterioration of their resources and guarantee their continued viability in the future.

The achievement of sustainable development will only be secured if there is openness for a "cultural change" in shifting the region’s patterns of development. Local Authorities, enterprises, and social organisations are key players in this process of change.

The development and management of local co-operation projects and networks requires a strong commitment as well as expertise, technical and political capability and organisational creativity.

The region considers pivotal the support of the European Union for the work of the local authorities in the Mediterranean, through the MEDA program. The role of the tourism business sector in pollution reduction and prevention and its co-operation with local authorities when implementing their programs is also essential.


Ms. Carolina Suau Bosch,
Local Agenda 21, Co-ordinator,
Ajuntament de Calvià Mallorca,
Can Vich, 29
07184 Calvià, Mallorca, Spain
Tel. (34 9) 71-139100 Fax. (34 9) 71-139148
E-mail: agendalocal21@calvia.com