Litter in the Calanques

Combatting anti-social habits and making users responsible

Operation Calanques Propre ("Clean Calanques") in 2019 © C. Bellanger - Parc national des Calanques
Eco-citizen litter collection © Parc national des Calanques
Good habits Campaign © B. Béchet - Parc national des Calanques
Fly-tipping in the Calanques © Parc national des Calanques
The National Park is peri-urban and overcrowded during the summer months, and is subject to pressure from anti-social habits, particularly in the area of litter. Because this type of pollution seriously degrades the natural environment, the National Park is committed to various actions aimed at developing eco-citizen awareness among users.


A bin for life

Until the 1990s, litter bins could be found in the natural areas of the Calanques, particularly in En-Vau and Port-Pin: the French National Foresty Office (ONF) would remove several cubic metres of waste from them per week. The presence of these bins, in addition to detracting from the character of the area, did not encourage visitors to realise that they were entering an area distinct from the city, a fragile and preserved natural area that requires different thinking and action. In addition, they posed several problems: dispersion of waste (especially due to wind), increased risk of fire, vehicle traffic for collection, etc.

On the initiative of the ONF and with the help of the Conservatoire du Littoral and local authorities, the bins were removed from the Calanques National Park and signs were put up to encourage visitors to take their waste home with them. Since then, however, we have witnessed the phenomenon of "invisible bins": users continue to abandon their waste in the places that the bins once occupied...


Developping eco-citizen responsibility

The problem of waste dumping by users is more widespread in the most popular sites of the National Park (southern coastline of Marseille between Mont Rose and Callelongue, Luminy and Sugiton, the Calanques accessible from Cassis, the Calanques de La Ciotat), particularly during busy periods (spring weekends and the summer season). Although rubbish collection is not one of the National Park's missions, they are often forced to do so.

In order to both combat bad behaviour and mobilise goodwill, the National Park is implementing and participating in various operations:

  • Coastal clean-up days, such as those at Cap Canaille, Cap Croisette, Les Goudes, Callelongue and En-Vau
  • The "Bons gestes" (Good Habit) campaign: read the press release (in French)
  • Le "flagrant délit de bon geste" (good habits  in flagrante delicto): 2019 and 2020 editions
  • Les Pirates du Plastique (Plastic Pirates): in 2021

Some of these campaigns are carried out jointly with numerous organisations: Clean my Calanques, the Club Alpin Marseille Provence, Anotherway, 1 déchet par jourCPIENaturoscope, Mer Veille, etc.


It is forbidden to damage the Calanques National Park site, particularly by depositing waste: any offender is liable to a fine of 135 euros. There are no bins in the Calanques: take your rubbish with you!


The problem of fly-tipping

Rubble dumping is regularly observed by National Park staff and residents. This practice is unacceptable.

In order to combat this phenomenon, the National Park's Environmental Inspectors open a judicial enquiry each time a problem is observed. One of them has already led to the site being restored by the polluter caught in flagrante delicto. Legal proceedings are planned and the courts will decide on the penalties incurred.

The deposit of any waste and materials in a protected site such as the National Park can be very costly as it is punishable by two years in prison and a fine of 300,000 euros.

There are several waste disposal sites in the vicinity of the National Park, including:

  • Marseille Sud: Quartier ZAC La Jarre, Rue du Capitaine Jean Crosia, 13009 Marseille, Tel. +33 (0)
  • Marseille Bonnefoy: 11 bd Bonnefoy, 13010 Marseille, Tel. +33 (0)
  • Marseille Libérateurs: 45, bd Libérateurs, 13011 Marseille, Tel. +33 (0)
  • Cassis: Vallon des Anglais Quartier de la Gare 13260 Cassis, Tel. +33 (0)
  • La Ciotat: Chemin du Mistral, ZI Athélia 3, 13600 La Ciotat, Tel. +33 (0)
  • Gémenos: Quartier de la Grande Vigne, Chemin des Graviers, 13240 Gémenos, Tel. +33 (0)
  • Roquefort-la-Bédoule: Les Fourniers, 13830 Roquefort-la-Bédoule, Tel. +33 (0)
Waste disposal sites in the Aix-Marseille-Provence Métropole