The America’s Cup in Venice was simply spectacular: the racing, the backdrop, the excitement of the crowds. Bruno Trouble of Louis Vuitton called it the best show he’s ever seen in his decades of working with the America’s Cup, and we have to agree.
From a Clean Regattas standpoint, Venice faces it’s own set of local challenges. Just as we have seen lately with the regattas we work with in the Caribbean, islands pose some unique problems to organizers. In the case of Venice, it’s 118 small islands and a mind-boggling series of canals. Everything must not only be brought from the mainland, but transported within the city itself, by boat. Because of this, things like composting are impossible. Plastic bottles for water and other drinks are simply unavoidable.
Despite the changing local circumstances and unique challenges faced in each venue, many of the Clean Regattas Best Practices have become an ingrained part of regatta operations. In Venice, the following actions were taken:
- Trash and recycling bins throughout the site
- A motivated Green Team, cleaning the event areas and the water around them
- Recyclable, paper products used in lunches
- Water filling stations and reusable bottles for staff
- An emphasis on paperless, electronic communication
- Reuse of signage between events
- Oil spill procedure and spill kits in all power boats
- Shore pumpout of black and grey water
- Water only washdowns for all boats
- Stormwater pollution prevention plan in place
- Maintenance fully contained with vacuum sanders etc
- Drivers educated in fuel efficiency
- Shore power used instead of generators
- Non-toxic cleaning products and copper free bottom paints used
- Boats washed to prevent spread of invasive species before departure
- Healthy Ocean Project public education exhibits from IUCN and local NGOs
We’ve been very involved in the local planning process for the coming America’s Cup event in Newport, which promises to be a fantastic Clean Regatta. Come check it out: June 26- July 1.