On 23 July 2015, members of the University of Oviedo-Atlantic Botanical Garden, coordinating member of the Life+ARCOS project, met at the city council house in Ribadesella to discuss the activities planned within the Life+ARCOS project with members of the municipal corporation, within the Site of Community Importance called “Vega Beach.”
The following people attended the meeting from the University of Oviedo: Mr Álvaro Bueno Sánchez and Mr J. Ignacio Alonso Felpete, as technical heads of the project; from the city council of Ribadesella: Mr Ignacio Baldó García, councillor of the environment and Ms Patricia Toyos González, surveyor from the council, who was accompanied by two employees of this section.
Attendees received a thematic portfolio on the LIFE+ARCOS subject “Conserving Cantabrian Dunes” and learned about the scope of action and activities to be carried out on Vega Beach through 2018.
The aerial photo of the protected area was used to talk about where the main activities will take place. We talked about the need to regulate access points to the beach, to eradicate exotic invasive species in dune areas—such as the Australian laurel (Pittosporum tobira), Arctoteca calendula or Stenotaphrum americanum and others that are present in fragments of the alder grove (a habitat that is also protected and prioritised by European legislation) at the final part of the river that flows into Vega Beach.
At the meeting there was also time to coordinate some municipal activities such as placement of lifeguard stands and mechanical cleaning work. The goal was to make sure these activities do not threaten protected species in the Regional Catalogue of Threatened Flora of Asturias.
The head of the Environment of the city council of Ribadesella’s knowledge of the area, resulting from having lived in the village of Vega for many years, enormously facilitated the conversation and discussion of information about the ownership of land bordering the Site of Community Importance.
The meeting concluded with council members interest in the project. They agreed to meet in September to discuss important public information functions about activities on Vega Beach and in the council of Ribadesella.