Deep Blue Surfing Event – Program
Sustainable Surf’s latest program – Deep Blue Surfing Event™ – was born out of our partnership with the Association of Surfing Professionals (ASP) – North America that produced the first ever set of “Green Guidelines” for surfing contests, designed to help facilitate the running of more “ocean-friendly” surfing events.
ASP events that have implemented these guidelines and have published reports are:
- Volcom Fiji Pro 2013
- Volcom Pipe Pro 2013
- Volcom Fiji Pro 2012
- Rip Curl Pro Search San Francisco 2011.
The Deep Blue Surfing Event™ program is a tool to help surf brands and event producers follow the recommendations of those guidelines from the ASP, to dramatically increase the environmental performance of their event by addressing its operational, environmental and community footprint through the following five categories.
Five Major Categories of Environmental Impacts.
- Implement a comprehensive waste diversion strategy to reduce, reuse, recycle, or compost event waste and building materials.
- Minimum Goal: 25% or more waste diversion from landfill by weight.
- Source some portion of event power from clean, renewable (non-fossil fuel) sources such as biodiesel, solar or other alternative energy sources.
- Minimum Goal: 25% of total event power from renewable energy.
- Use cleaner/lower carbon fuel vehicles for internal operations, and support the use of public transportation and human powered modes – walk, skate & bike – for event attendees (where applicable).
- Minimum Goal: Internal use – use lower carbon vehicles for staff and athlete transportation needs. External – actively encourage shuttle service for spectators to and from event, and offer incentives for reserved/valet bike and skateboard parking (where applicable).
#4: Community Support
- Showcase the efforts of local environmental and social organizations, and include them as stakeholders for possible legacy efforts post-event.
- Minimum Goal: Engage with and provide support for at least one NGO working on a local issue relevant to the event, and/or look to provide space at event for two local environmental/social organizations to communicate with the public about their work.
#5: Climate Change
- Calculate the total CO2 footprint of event, and mitigate this impact by purchasing certified/verified carbon offset credits through a reputable provider.
- Minimum Goal: 50% of total event CO2 footprint offset or mitigated.
* The case study used to develop these guidelines was the 2011 Rip Curl Pro Search held in San Francisco, CA. See the Final Sustainability Report from this event. These guidelines and related recommendations are intended to be flexible so as to allow for the unique resources available at each individual contest.
Qualification Criteria for Designation as a Deep Blue Surfing Event™
To obtain a Deep Blue Surfing Event™ status, the event must:
- Commit to Deep Blue Surfing Event program as the path for reducing event impacts, and work with Sustainable Surf to develop a sustainability strategy for the event,
- Achieve the recommended minimum goals for at least two of the five categories of environmental impacts.
Importance of a Deep Blue Surfing Event™
A Deep Blue Surfing Event™ designation sends a clear message to all spectators and sponsors: this event is serious about reducing it’s environmental impact, while leaving a positive legacy for the community. There are many local and global environmental threats to surfing, such as marine plastic pollution, the looming extinction of coral reefs from ocean acidification and ocean warming, and the “permanent high tide” from sea level rise that will swamp out most surf breaks.
Ultimately, the educational focus at the heart of the Deep Blue Surfing Event program (indeed, all of Sustainable Surf’s programs) is to inspire the viewers of these surfing events to take the same types of actions they see at the surf contest, in their own daily lives. This collective effort can, and will, result in a better world for the sport and culture of surfing.
We are proud to offer this program as way to help provide a path for ASP sanctioned events, including the World Championship Tour (WCT), to join the ranks of other major sporting events like the 2012 Super Bowl and the 2012 Summer Olympics. We want to encourage the leaders of the surfing industry to engage with others from the NBA, NFL, MLB, and NHL that are collaborating through the Green Sports Alliance to improve the environmental performance and footprint of their operations, while demonstrating important leadership for their fans.
Global Reporting Index for Events
The guidelines above are consistent with the recently released Global Reporting Index (GRI) – Event Organizers Sector Supplement, being used at the 2012 Summer Olympics. The GRI reporting process has become the defacto standard for reporting on sustainability performance. Any actions taken to create a more sustainable surfing event can be easily translated to the GRI context. This will help Event Organizers integrate their event performance into company-wide GRI reports, or any other sustainability reporting process.
Each Sustainable Surfing Event category translates to the following GRI “Indicators”, which are described fully in the GRI Event Organizers document.
- Waste: EN1, EN2, EN21, EN22
- Energy: EN3, EN4, EN5, EN6, EN7
- Transportation: EO2, EO
- Carbon Footprint: EN16, EN17, EN18, EN19, EN20
- Community Outreach: SO1, SO9, SO10, EO5, EO6, EO11, EO12, EO13, EN11, EN12, EN13, EN14, EN15
Working With Sustainable Surf on Your Next Surfing Event
For those surf brands and event producers who would like to understand how to obtain a Deep Blue Surfing Event designation, please contact us and see the basic steps below.
- Initial Consultation
- Meet with Sustainable Surf to discuss possible actions for implementing the ASP green guidelines in a way that is geared for a specific event
- This service is provided free of charge to all ASP sanctioned events for 2013
- Deep Blue Surfing Event designation and strategy consulting
- Work with brand and event organizers to develop sustainability strategy for event to follow the ASP green guidelines
- Evaluate event sustainability performance, including data collection from event organizers and quantification of results post-event
- Provide Deep Blue Surfing Event designation/logo for events as marketing asset
- Publish final sustainability results on Sustainable Surf website
- This service has a low flat fee
- Implementation and Project Management of Sustainability Efforts (optional)
- Develop strategy and manage implementation for all sustainability efforts of the event
- Work with event producers to ensure maximum benefit from a specific budget
- This service has a negotiable rate depending on the scope of work