Certification process

Local governments ( Panchayats, Municipal Councils, district administration), government agencies, Ministries, that have an interest to develop specific beach stretches as Blue Flag certified beach may approach the Blue Flag India National Operator for guidelines. Hospitality industry, corporate, communities can also associate / support or co-apply with the local government to pursue a beach stretch of their interest to achieve Blue Flag standards.

An applicant may send an expression of interest to pursue Blue Flag certification for a specific beach stretch to the National Operator. They shall then be guided about the future steps.

Relevant forms and materials are sent to the applicant in order to furnish preliminary information and prepare a self-assessment regarding current status of compliance to the Blue Flag certification criteria, along the categories of Environment Education and Information; Water Quality; Environment Management; Safety and Access.

Based on above inputs, applicants reviews decision as to whether they would like to formally register for certification process and accordingly may formally register with the National Operator to initiate certification support. Once the registration form and fee is received by the National Operator; a gap analysis is initiated to identify key gaps and interventions required to fulfil Blue Flag certification criteria. This also supports the applicant to identify and create appropriate management systems, interventions and investments required in their beach stretch.

National Operator presents the gap analysis report to the National Blue Flag Jury and the jury further recommends their views to FEE Blue Flag International Jury for award as pilot or certified status.

The award will be subsequently renewed for every season based on compliance to the Blue Flag criteria. The National Operator undertakes control visits subsequent to the gap analysis or award of pilot status or certified status. Such reports are also updated to the National Jury and International Jury for renewal or pursue of Blue Flag certification status.

A Blue Flag pilot status for a beach creates opportunities for the respective coastal states and local administrative bodies to upgrade their beaches to Blue Flag standards.

The Blue Flag certification process assists in fulfilling the objectives of the MoEFCC flagship programmes on Integrated Coastal Zone Management (ICZM) and Coastal Mission.