As the Volvo Ocean Race boats make their way from Hong Kong to Auckland and the Race Village is dismantled the legacy of our stopover will be felt for some time to come through our Sustainability Programme.
A Volvo Ocean Race workshop explored the problems and solution to developing sustainable waste management initiatives for events in Hong Kong. Those shared experiences and achievements are to be used to continue the movement towards a more sustainable future for events in Hong Kong.
In the Race Village at Kai Tak, sustainable event management meant that a staggering 70 000 single–use items including bottles, cups, plates, and cutlery were not required. And in total 750kg of plastic waste was also avoided.
The Volvo Ocean Race Ocean Summit saw a range of solutions to the crisis of plastic affecting the health of our Oceans presented at the sold out event.
At the summit, pledges on ways to reduce plastic at source were revealed by the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (HKSAR) government alongside an exciting concept on coffee cup waste reduction from Cupclub. Multinational companies such as Stena Recycling AB and United Nations Environment also offered their own views on how to reduce plastic impacts. Dr Ivone Mirpuri from the Mirpuri Foundation talked about some of the impacts plastics are having on human health.
Hong Kong was the busiest stopover so far for our Education Programme. Around 3020 students attend sustainability workshops in the Race Village. There was encouraging feedback from the 70 teachers who also came along.
Globally, the Education Programme has currently been downloaded in 32 different countries with more recent additions including Austria, Mexico, Bulgaria and Greece. Around the world, the programme is being used by over 37,000 students.
Anne-Cecile Turner, Sustainability Programme Leader for the Volvo Ocean Race, said: “We are seeing the range of initiatives that form part the Sustainability Programme have a real impact at the Race stopovers and beyond.
“What is truly inspiring for us is the long-term legacy we are able to leave by convening the key influencers with a common purpose to help deliver solutions to the issues related to single-use plastics.
“This crisis requires sustained and co-ordinated effort if we are collectively going to make difference and turn the tide on this scourge of our Oceans. By coming to Hong Kong and working with local and pan-Asian groups we hope to have contributed to making a difference to the plastic crisis.”
For all of the latest news on the Volvo Ocean Race Sustainability Programme, you can subscribe to our monthly newsletter by clicking here