Clean Regattas in Lisbon - Sailors for the Sea

Clean Regattas in Lisbon

 June 25, 2015  | By: Oceana

Earlier this month, Sailors for the Sea Portugal helped run the second ever Clean Regatta in their home country. But rather than practice on a few small events, they decided to sprint up the mountain of sustainability by teaming up with the Volvo Ocean Race Stopover in Lisbon to make it a Silver Level Clean Regatta. We are excited to share that this dedicated group of 40 volunteers was wildly successful! 

Very large, temporary events have the potential to generate huge amounts of waste and with over 200,000 people visiting the race village from May 25th to June 7th, the potential for some of this waste to become marine debris was very real. Fortunately, with Sailors for the Sea Portugal leading the way, this event took many precautions to prevent this from happening.

As the Volvo Ocean Race boats left Newport, Sailors for the Sea Portugal heard some of the lessons learned at the Volvo Village in Newport, and put their sustainability plan into action. Highlights from the best practices met include:

  • Good Waste Management, by always pairing a trashcan and recycling bin together. All 97 bins were labeled clearly to educate spectators where their waste should go.
  • Volunteers educated spectators on site about which items should go to landfill and which should be recycled.
  • No paper used to display race results.
  • Responsible Dinnerware: Eliminated 85% of single-use dinnerware and silverware!
  • Race instructions did not alter Rule 55.
  • Offered vegetarian options on menus, providing healthier and more eco-friendly alternatives for hungry spectators.
  • Used non-toxic cleaning products.
  • Venue had bike racks and bike fix-it stations to promote bicycling.
  • Shared Clean Regatta sustainability goals with visitors, online and through media.

We are very proud to say that the Volvo Ocean Race Stopover earned their silver level certification and congratulations to Sailors for the Sea Portugal for organizing the sustainability initiatives!