Launched in 2011 with the Rip Curl Pro, San Francisco, the initiative has seen nearly 30 major surf events be recognized for their efforts to hold an ocean-friendly ‘Deep Blue’ event.
A Deep Blue Event™ is a more “Ocean Friendly” event, that sets a clear path for reducing environmental impacts, while also providing social benefits for the local community. Sustainable Surf provides a transparent reporting platform that evaluates the sustainability performance of each event based on the international standard for sustainable event reporting – the Global Reporting Initiative (GRI).
The program focuses on five key sustainability impacts: Waste, Energy, Community Support, Climate Change and Transportation. More information about the Deep Blue Event focus areas can be found here.
Deep Blue Events address impacts directly related to the local contest area, including waste reduction, protection of natural resources, and the building of stronger communities. They also reduce direct threats to the global sport of surfing itself, such as: sea level rise, ocean acidification, and the loss of the world’s living coral reefs, which leading scientific institutions warn are already harming our oceans, waves and beaches.
The list of past events that have received the DBE designation and have published reports are:
The impact of a Deep Blue 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 WSL sanctioned events, including the World Championship Tour (WCT), to join the ranks of other major sporting leaugues like the NBA, NFL, MLB, and the 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.
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.