WMRT: Sustainability and ocean health
Published on June 9th, 2022
(June 9, 2022) – Following yesterday’s celebration of World Ocean Day, the World Match Racing Tour today announced a new collaboration with Sailors for The Sea Powered by Oceana, the world’s leading ocean conservation organization that engages, educates, and activates the sailing and boating community towards restoring ocean health around the globe.
As the longest running global professional series in sailing, and officially sanctioned ‘Special Event’ by the sport’s governing body World Sailing since 2006, the World Match Racing Tour has been continuously committed to supporting worldwide sustainability initiatives focused on reducing the use of single use plastics and ensuring the protection and health of our oceans. The Tour is also one of the first signatories of World Sailing’s 2030 Sustainability Charter.
The new collaboration will involve WMRT and the Sailors for the Sea organization promoting the highly successful ‘Clean Regattas’ program across all WMRT event partners with the aim of events gaining official certification under the Clean Regattas program.
Launched in 2006, the Clean Regattas program by Sailors for the Sea is the world’s only sustainability certification for water-based events; more than 3,000 events and 795,000 sailors have participated in the program in over 50 countries. The free self-assessment program awards levels of certification based on the sustainable activities achieved at events with Platinum status being the highest level to achieve.
“We have a very unique model on the World Match Racing Tour,” added WMRT Executive Director James Pleasance. “As the racing yachts and equipment are supplied by each of our event partners, we do not ship a single container to any event around the world, which significantly reduces our carbon footprint and the use of unnecessary fuels and emissions.
“Each of our event partners then activate their own local programs to ensure they keep their events as sustainable as possible including reducing waste and use of single plastics. The added advantage of match racing close to shore is that teams and events also do not need to cover fast or long distances in support boats.”
Shelley Brown, Director of Sailors of the Sea at their headquarters in Newport, RI added, “We are delighted to collaborate with the World Match Racing Tour to help spread our message at Sailors for the Sea, particularly through our Clean Regattas program. We are passionate about restoring the health of our seas, including reducing the amount of plastic entering our oceans.
“The global sailing community through its events, regattas and clubs can be leaders in protecting our oceans and provide a powerful message to the rest of the world.”
Regatta organizers looking to establish sustainable practices at their events are encouraged to register as a Clean Regatta and visit the discussion board, where Clean Regattas organizers can ask questions, offer advice, or source innovative solutions to their sustainability challenges.