2018 Newport Bermuda Race Earns
The Bermuda Race Organizing Committee is proud to
announce the race has earned gold-level certification from Sailors for the
Sea’s Clean Regattas program, a race of its own aimed at restoring ocean health.
Clean Regattas is a
certification system with five levels—Participant, Bronze, Silver, Gold and
Platinum—enabling sailors to protect their local waters with as many of 25 best
practices as possible, making sustainability approachable and easy.
The race earned Clean Regattas certification previously, in 2014 and 2016, but
this is the first year the race reached the Gold level.
Joe Harris, leader of the Newport Bermuda Race Green Team, reported achieving
19 of 25 best practices en route to earning Gold certification. Those practices
- Organizing a Green Team of
- Engaging the public through the
race website and social media;
- Reducing the number of
single-serve plastic water bottles used by competitors in favor of
- Providing water-refill
- Providing compost
- Making the race a “Trash Free
Regatta under RRS Rule 55 (No discharge)”;
- Encouraging recycling and
making recycling stations available in both Newport and Bermuda.
engaging all the competitors and the race community in the principles of
sustainability was a major step forward,” Harris said. “It got everyone
thinking about how to protect the oceans and shorelines where we love to sail.”
In Bermuda, Green Team member Hal Kempe coordinated a comprehensive program for
separating general trash and recyclables, with clearly marked and abundant
bins. It made recycling easy for competitors and fans. Goslings also helped out
with reusable, recyclable drink cups.
Harris also credited the communications team for extra effort, including fun
interviews with Green Team members by Nic Douglass of "Adventures of a
Sailor Girl." He also pointed to the beach cleanup the team did in Newport
with the local environmental group, Clean Ocean Access. “It was a great way
to get to know the folks at COA,” he said, “and shine a light on all their
Looking ahead to the 2020 race, Harris pointed to three areas of improvement.
“We need to do a better job on composting, making it more available in
both Newport and Bermuda,” he said. “And I know we can recruit more volunteers
for our Green Team so we are more visible in our green t-shirts and keep
environmental best practices front and center. We also would like to
provide every competitor in the 2020 race with a branded, re-useable, insulated
cup/mug to use for all beverages throughout the race. That should get rid of a
ton of plastic!”
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