**Update October 2021**
Taking action works! Hundreds of thousands of us signed a petition that has stopped a mega-port in Tenerife that threatened the only whale heritage site in the European Union. Huge mobilisation around this campaign led to a sudden U-turn of most political forces in the local authority responsible for approving the port. Even the regional government made declarations that they felt the local authority should give up on this port. We won! The home to more than 75 protected species including whales, dolphins, sharks and turtles is now safe.
Still, the league of construction businessmen can’t accept they have lost for now. They will probably be waiting for their next opportunity to build the mega-port. Some politicians might also go back to supporting the mega-port if they think our mobilisation is over. That’s why we are not going to lower our guard. Together we make a difference.
Europe’s only whale sanctuary is under threat. All because profit-seeking businessmen are pushing to redirect EU money into a new megaport – right in the middle of it!
Today, more than sixteen species of whales and dolphins find safety in a strip of calm waters in the Canary Islands.  As one of only five sanctuaries in the entire world, it’s a gem we can all be proud of.  After months of backroom talks, businessmen are sneaking their project through while people's attention is elsewhere in August.
The good news is: they need EU funding to make it happen. The same funds the EU Commission promised would be spent with the environment in mind. But, with billions of euros to provide to thousands of projects across Europe, the EU is not watching closely enough. If we raise our voices together, we could shine a spotlight on the sanctuary before it’s too late.
Right now we’re pushing to secure a meeting with the EU Commission. Already, over 340,000 people have signed the petition to save the sanctuary, but the more of us that stand united, the better our chances will be.
In Tenerife, thousands of great mammals find a paradise to rest, thrive and reproduce.
Well, that’s when there’s no ship traffic. Hope, a baby whale, has become a symbol for the whale sanctuary – her tail was shredded by a passing boat. Hope, like many reefs, turtles and dolphins, didn’t survive. Imagine what a megaport with cruise ships and boats would do to the area. We’d see hundreds more stories like Hope’s each week.
When local Canarians launched this petition, they knew this was a common European concern. They knew Europe is not just about EU politics. It’s about how we join forces to influence what is happening in all of our hometowns, villages and countries.
That’s why so many are already standing up for the sanctuary. But if we can get to half a million supporters, the EU Commission would have a hard time refusing a meeting with us.