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Local News in Ibiza

Local News
by Louise Wright

Summer in Ibiza

Ibiza Local News

Summer in Ibiza has certainly taken its toll on everyone and everything and I do not just mean people suffering from heat exhaustion. For example, last Friday the islands only electrical supplier, Gesa, broke the record of electrical consumption for the second time this summer. The Ibiza and Formentera system reached its peak at 21,41 hours on Friday night when the islands used a grand total of 135 Mega Watts, the maximum electric consumption in Gesa's history. The experts assured that the increase in demand of power was produced by the recent high temperatures. They also added that these figures would drop, with the temperatures, over the weekend. Although Gesa has so far been able to cope with the record demand, facts like these only make it more clear that every year Ibiza and Formentera need more and more power.

It is now about time we started saving energy, as this seems to be the only way to keep-up with the islands growing needs.

Can Misses hospital is also suffering from the 'August syndrome'. The co-ordinator of the Casualty department, Carlos Rodríguez Ribas, has declared that too many people are passing through the emergency unit and the system is saturated.

"Most people that we see have not got serious injuries but they come to Casualty because they panic. My recommendation would be that anybody who is not in a serious condition should go to a medical centre instead of coming to the hospital", stated Ribas.

Eventhough Can Misses staff has been reinforced to cope with the summer rush, it is still not enough. Figures show that on average 150 people pass through Can Misses Casualty department everyday during the summer, too many people for the staff of four doctors and four nurses per shift to cope with.

A recent study has also revealed that Ibiza Town needs two more medical centres to cope with the alarming increase of population.

Although Can Misses has been going through a bad patch with the lack of staff, the health department (Conselleria de Sanitat) has still found time for the local charities. The most recent donation was that of six million pesetas to three non-governmental organizations. The Government has donated four million pesetas to the gay and lesbian association Ben Amics and to the anti-Aids organization Alas. A further two million pesetas was donated to the Escuela de Sida (Aids School). This money will be used in an awareness campaign to alert people of the dangers of Aids, which is a world-wide problem.

The August month has also forced the local police, Policía Local and the Guardia Civil (Civil Guards), to incorporate more officers to patrol the San Antonio streets. These specialized police will control the streets making sure that the drug problem remains under control over the summer season. The object of the police force is to clampdown on the 'danger zones' so that the number of drug related crimes are reduced.

The local police have also had a lot to say about the MTV festival planned for the 29th August. Policía Nacional (National Police), Guardia Civil (Civil Guards) and the Fire Brigade have all expressed how dangerous it would be to fit 20.000 people in the San Rafael Hippodrome when the legal capacity is for 700.

During the week, the local newspapers published that the MTV Ibiza summer festival would be taking place after two politicians from San Antonio convinced the San Rafael population to accept the concert in exchange of a donation of six million pesetas. The money would be used to buy new furniture for the local church, etc. MTV also had to pay five million pesetas in payment for last year's festival.

This year it is becoming more and more clear that the San Antonio Town Hall and the Island Council (Consell Insular) are abusing the situation in a bid to get as much money as they can from the successful music channel. It is now just a question of how far MTV will go or how much money they are prepared to pay to get their licence. Considering that a channel of MTV's dimensions could make or break Ibiza in the tourist industry, should the Government be playing with such a delicate situation? I will keep you posted.

The BBC Radio 1 Weekend also caused some problems on the island because of the huge amount of people they attracted. The local neighbours complained about the noise and the mess that was left behind.

Part of the Radio 1 Weekend was to be held at Pacha discotheque. About one hour before the live transmission, the owner of the discotheque, Ricardo Urgell, cancelled the event claiming that the noise from the Pacha terrace would disturb the neighbours. The Radio 1 crew solved the problem by continuing their live transmission from Café Mambo and announcing on-air that Pacha had suffered a power failure.

Other events that occurred over the week included a live performance from pop queens Atomic Kitten in San Antonio's Es Paradis Terrenal discotheque on Sunday 5th August. The objective of the concert was to promote their new album "Right Now" on Monday 6th August in the UK which includes their new single "Eternal Flame" that is now at number one in the English top ten. The song is a new version of the 1989 Bangles hit.

Liz McClarnon, one of the members of Atomic Kitten, did not attend the concert because of a health problem. "Liz felt faint when she got on the plane at Gatwick so the captain decided it was best that she did not travel", said Natasha, one of Liz's fellow members. Tasha also said that "Liz was supposed to join us in Ibiza later but because we still had her passport she wasn't able to travel".

The show must go on and so it did. Atomic Kitten performed at four o'clock in the morning on the Es Paradis stage in front of thousands of fans. The pop group opened the concert with their European number one "Whole Again" followed by two songs to liven-up the crowd before finishing with their new single "Eternal Flame".

The kittens also made a guest appearance at the Radio 1 Weekend before going to Space discotheque for a night clubbing.

Atomic Kitten is just one of the 'in' groups that choose Ibiza to promote their latest releases, proving Ibiza's influence in the global music industry.

Another famous face that has chosen Ibiza to present his latest art work is Lorenzo Quinn, son of the legendary actor Anthony Quinn.

Lorenzo has an exhibition at a local art gallery where he is presenting his new collection of sculptures. Flamboyant as usual, one of his most intriguing pieces is a life-like sculpture of Jesus Christ breaking free from the cross.

Quinn has also carried on his usual theme of sculpting hands, which is present in all of his artwork.

The exhibition is being held at Es Molí art gallery in Santa Gertrudis and will remain opened to the public for the next few days.

If you have any spare time during this hectic period of August, I recommend a visit.

Louise Wright