Health and Safety
Two years after the creation of the Clean & Safe Stamp, Turismo de Portugal updates the membership requirements associated with the Covid-19 pandemic and also extends the scope of this support tool to companies, in order to enable them to respond quickly to other situations with a negative impact on tourists’ health.
The Clean & Safe Stamp maintains the focus on the sanitary component, continuing to promote the hygienic performance of companies with requirements appropriate to the current epidemiological phase of Covid-19, but extends its scope to other health risks associated with infections by biological agents.
Biological agents include viruses, bacteria, fungi, and parasites, and can cause health problems, either directly or through exposure to related allergens or toxins.
A heat wave, according to the World Meteorological Organization (WMO), “occurs when, in an interval of at least six consecutive days, the maximum daily temperature is 5ºC higher than the daily average value in the reference period” (IM).
This extreme thermal phenomenon contributes to the creation of conditions conducive to the spread of forest fires and has a major impact on human health, in particular on the elderly population, children and people with heart and respiratory diseases, to which awareness and prevention actions should be directed. The impact that this phenomenon has on tourists, who are more exposed to the adverse effects of the climate because they are away from their usual routines and place of residence, should also be highlighted.
Extreme Phenomena and collective risks
The 2022 version of the Clean & Safe Stamp also extends its scope to a security dimension that is transversal to tourist activity, covering, in addition to health, other situations of possible vulnerability of tourists, namely those associated with the most common or probable extreme phenomena and collective risks in the national territory, such as rural fires, earthquakes and tsunamis and floods.
A Rural Fire is defined as the existence and progression of a fire, in an unplanned or uncontrolled way, in a rural territory, requiring combat actions for its control and extinction. This designation is broader than the commonly used term "Forest Fire", as it includes not only forest fires but also fires that occur in bushes, pastures, agricultural crops, etc.
As they develop in rural landscapes, burning mostly vegetable fuels and progressing along the landscape, they are distinguished from Structural Fires (also called Urban Fires), which occur in built-up areas and are fed by fuels present in constructions. However, urban fires can also spread to the surrounding rural space and can affect houses, factories and other buildings, which is why it is essential to have protection strips and other measures at the interface between rural spaces and built spaces.
Rural fires are one of the most serious natural disasters in Portugal, not only because of the high frequency with which they occur and the extent they reach, but also because of the destructive effects they cause. In addition to economic and environmental damage, they can be a source of danger to populations and property.
Human intervention can play a decisive role in its origin and in limiting its development, which distinguishes rural fires from other natural disasters.
Earthquakes and Tsunamis
An earthquake is a natural phenomenon resulting from a rupture, more or less violent, inside the earth's crust, corresponding to the release of a large amount of energy, which causes vibrations that are transmitted to a vast surrounding area, and can have significant destructive effects. When seismic activity is generated in the ocean, it can be accompanied by tsunamis or tidal waves, causing great destruction in coastal or riverside structures (boats, houses, bridges, etc.).
It is not yet possible to predict earthquakes, however, it is possible to try to minimize their effects by identifying areas of greater risk, building more solid structures, promoting education of the population, namely with regard to the safety measures to be taken during an earthquake, and drawing up emergency plans.
Flooding means the temporary covering by water of an area where this would not normally occur. It includes floods caused by periods of heavy rainfall, by rivers, mountain torrents and ephemeral Mediterranean water courses, and floods caused by the sea in coastal areas.
Floods are the most frequently occurring natural disaster that can cause widespread devastation, with loss of life, economic and social damage and environmental impacts.
Its inclusion in the scope of the Clean & Safe Stamp is intended to increase the resilience of companies in the sector and contribute to the reduction of damage caused by floods and their negative impacts on tourist activity.
The Tourism sector, committed to sustainability, is aware of the need to contribute, in an effective and immediate way, to the reduction and promotion of a more efficient use of water, namely in Tourist Accommodation.
The efficient use of water (or water efficiency) is also associated with significant savings in water and energy costs, as well as the prevention of risks associated with water (eg floods, unavailability of water), contributing to the competitiveness and resilience of the sector.
The reduction of the carbon footprint, associated with direct and indirect CO2 emissions from water use, also contributes to the fulfillment of sustainability objectives and to access to green financing, in a context of growing demand for environmental, social and governance criteria ( ESG). With water efficiency, the regions, the planet and the sector win.
Aiming to make the tourism sector increasingly resilient to the uncertainties and crises it may face, the Clean & Safe Stamp also promotes training of members in the prevention and response to eventual emergency situations associated with cross border constraints, namely involving cybersecurity and reception of refugees.
The concept of Cybersecurity can be understood as a set of measures and procedures aimed at preventing, monitoring, detecting and correcting information networks and systems in the face of the threats to which they are exposed, trying to maintain a desired security state and guarantee confidentiality, integrity, availability and non-repudiation of information.
It can also be defined as the feeling of security people perceive when using the Internet and digital technologies.
Its inclusion within the scope of the Clean & Safe Stampl reflects the commitment to prevention and awareness of this topic, taking into account the current levels of digital literacy, as well as the imperative need to promote a culture of cybersecurity in the tourism sector.
Within the framework of the United Nations, “forced migrants” are considered a vulnerable group of the population, being especially subject to structural vulnerabilities such as greater legal obstacles or other in the exercise of their choices and in claiming their right to be supported and to be protected in the event of crises.
Portugal has contributed to the discussion within the European Union regarding the response to the refugee crisis in Europe, and has been committed to the various actions that the EU has been developing in this context. The inclusion of this topic in the Clean & Safe training contents follows this line of action.
The Tourism sector, committed to sustainability, is aware of the need to contribute, in an effective and immediate way, to the reduction and promotion of a more efficient energy consumption, in particular, taking into account the current energy situation, associated with the context of war in Europe.