At the Noosa Festival of Surfing, we are proud to have been involved in establishing Noosa as a World Surfing Reserve, protected from development and destruction and preserved so that future generations may enjoy tomorrow what we cherish today.
Our commitment to giving back goes beyond the stunning environment we are blessed to call home. We are proud to take all the steps we can to make the festival as sustainable and low-impact as possible, but also proudly support worthy charities and organisations. We also strive to create as much benefit as possible to the local community from our ‘8 Days of Pure Stoke’, partnering with businesses to provide exposure and an income for them and valuable services and facilities to our many thousands of visitors from across Australia and around the world.
Here are just a few of the ways we will be Living and Giving Back the Stoke in 2020:
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.
Last year we partnered with Unity Water, bringing their ‘Back to Tap’ project to the beach. By providing low cost stainless steel drink bottles and asking all competitors and guests to the Festival to refill and reuse bottles we saved over 9,500 plastic water bottles (600ml)! We are stoked to bring back the ‘Back to Tap’ Van in 2020!
Plastic Free Festival
For the first time, the Festival went plastic free! Plastic Free Noosa provided clear and colourful waste station signage and bin covers and education to our Waste Warriors, who in turn educated our competitors and visitors on where to compost, recycle and place their waste.
The Board Meeting – Helping Local Families in Need
We understand that we have been given much in life, but the unexpected can happen and there are families in our community who are without. Therefore, it is a privilege to partner with the The Board Meeting Surf Charity, which helps local families with kids with disabilities in need. We had over 170 guests at the 2019 inaugural Board Meeting Gala Tropicana Surf Charity Dinner at Peppers, Noosa and had a great night raising much needed funds for the cause. We are looking forward to expanding the scope of our association with The Board Meeting and to continue to raise awareness of the needs of kids with disabilities.
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 Plastic Free Noosa, Oceanic Global 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 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 [email protected]
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.