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Dark Sky Association

The Dark Sky Association has the mission of developing sustainable destinations and to protect the night sky. Dark Sky® Alqueva is the first Starlight Tourism Destination in the world  It covers an area of 9.700 square kilometers around Lake Alqueva, on both Portuguese and Spanish sides.

The Network of Dark Sky® Destinations in Portugal has been created and includes now: Alqueva, Aldeias do Xisto, and Vale do Tua, representing the South, Center and North of Portugal´s countryside. The main mission is protecting the night sky as a resource for sustainable development, but also and above all, to raise awareness of the importance of protecting this resource from the growing problem of light pollution.

Role in programme(s):


In the framework of the Global Tourism Plastics Initiative, the Dark Sky Association commits to:

  • Stimulating the elimination of problematic or unnecessary plastic packaging and/or items 
  • Encouraging reuse models where relevant, to reduce the need for single-use plastic packaging and/or items
  • Increasing collection, sorting, reuse, and recycling rates, and facilitating the establishment of the necessary infrastructure and related funding mechanisms
  • Urging its partners to find alternative ways to problematic plastic by using recyclable items only
  • Including in the sessions they develop for the public the importance of protecting the environment and more specifically about plastics and unnecessary packaging