Surfing is nothing without nature.
At the Noosa Festival of Surfing, we are proud to have been involved in establishing Noosa as a National Surfing Reserve, protected from development and destruction and preserved so that future generations may enjoy tomorrow what we cherish today.
We’re not a bunch of hippies. We don’t eat mung beans or wear hemp clothing or have dreadlocks – at least, most of us don’t! But we do believe that this environment is precious. We know the importance of reducing, reusing and recycling and we are prepared to step forward and take responsibility for our actions.
To this end, we have taken the following steps to make the Noosa Festival of Surfing as sustainable as we can, protecting the beautiful surroundings that give us 365 Days of Pure Stoke.
Provision Of Recycling Bins
Every year, we organise the provision of both waste and recycling bins by Noosa Council, emptied daily throughout the event. With the assistance of Surfrider Foundation Sunshine Coast and our diligent commentary team, we regularly encourage all attendees to be aware of their own trash, as well as that of the less considerate visitors to the venue.
Efforts to Reduce Environmental Damage
We plan our event with significant consideration to the location, minimising the risk of natural areas, such as lawn and grassed areas, the shoreline and the wooded areas. We arrange infrastructure to enhance this, diverting foot traffic to prevent these places becoming damaged or used as thoroughfares.
These measures drastically reduce the need for regeneration or rehabilitation after the event.
Tank Water & Refillable Bottles
Every one of our 700 competitors receives a welcome pack. In previous years, this has intentionally included a reusable water bottle and a filtered water filling station has been installed onsite, encouraging guests to reuse their bottles rather than purchase water in single-use bottles.
Photo: Ian Borland
Promotion of Healthy Eating & Lifestyle
Surfing is the foundation of a healthy lifestyle, and one that enhances environmental awareness. At the Noosa Festival we go one step further, encouraging our visitors and competitors to get involved with daily yoga workshops, Zumba, beach clean-ups and various activities that address personal health and wellbeing, but also an appreciation of a cleaner, more sustainable lifestyle.
With such a huge amount of marketing and information to convey, the Noosa Festival of Surfing has gone to significant lengths to reduce the amount of paper used. Double-sided flyers, programs printed to be kept as souvenirs, and the use of electronic marketing and communication wherever possible have all greatly reduced the quantity of paper used.
We are constantly reviewing and assessing the impact of our sponsors as well, refusing to accept paper advertising for competitor gift bags and helping to bring an increased awareness of waste reduction throughout the annual Festival Village.
Encouraging Ethical Practice
We work closely with our suppliers, sponsors and vendors in every aspect of the Noosa Festival of Surfing’s creation and development, always searching for new ways to increase sustainability and reduce environmental impact. Working with environmental causes, such as Sea Shepherd and the Sunshine Coast chapter of the Surfrider Foundation, we bring attention, both through the event itself and our social media network, the numerous issues.
We also encourage sponsors to take a more ecological approach, reducing the usage of single-use waste and utilising products that promote reuse or natural, less chemical-based options, such as sunscreens.
There is a necessity for significant electricity consumption to allow the festival to function efficiently and professionally. Sound systems, computers, monitors and timers are all essential for the judging alone, and our evening entertainment is also dependent on electricity. But in every area of the festival’s infrastructure we endeavour to be as efficient and limited on electricity consumption as possible, opting for reduced lighting, minimal supply for stallholders and ensuring that power is used only when absolutely necessary.
With very limited parking and to alleviate congestion within Noosa Heads’ CBD, as well as to reduce emissions and pollution, we have a team of full-time traffic controllers to allow for efficient and effective use of parking spaces available. International competitors and visitors are directed towards accommodation within walking proximity to the festival, while those staying further afield are directed to the town’s efficient Park and Ride system and excellent public transport network.
We know we’re not perfect, but we are always striving for better ways to improve and reduce our environmental footprint. Partnering with ecological causes and brands, looking for ways to minimise waste – such as limiting single-use products and utilising biodegradable packaging – and increasing the public awareness are just the beginning.
If you or our business would like to join the Noosa Festival of Surfing as an Ecological Partner, or if you have any good ideas of ways to create a more sustainable festival, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
It is the responsibility of us all to make the change and protect the environments, so that future generations can continue to enjoy this paradise we call home.