The Butterfield Bermuda Championship has announced the continuation of their partnership with Aspen for 2023 in their quest to move closer towards a more sustainable future for Bermuda’s annual PGA TOUR event. The partnership includes support from local environmental charity, Keep Bermuda Beautiful (KBB), and Recycle Bermuda, part of the Waste Management section of the Ministry of Public Works.
Plastic is detrimental to Bermuda’s oceans, wildlife and population. As the harm caused by micro-plastics increases, it becomes a prominent issue that requires close attention from the sporting events industry as well as others.
Plans for this year’s tournament include a vast reduction of single-use plastic passing through the site throughout the event. Water stations positioned throughout the golf course will enable attendees to refill their own water bottles. Aspen will be providing 500 reusable water bottles per day at the entrance gate to help raise awareness and minimise the use of single-use plastic. In addition, the volunteer headquarters is reducing its plastic waste by providing reusable water bottles to all Butterfield Bermuda Championship volunteers and removing all disposable plastic water bottles from circulation. Concession stands will also serve drinks in reusable cups rather than disposable plastic.
Once again, the Butterfield Bermuda Championship has partnered with Bermuda Sands to produce an environmentally friendly uniform for volunteers and staff. The polo shirts produced by Bermuda Sands are made from 90% recycled water bottles.
On-site recycling will be made possible by a partnership with Cerobin trash cans, with support from KBB and Recycle Bermuda. Bermuda recycles tin, aluminium and glass (TAG), which Cerobins will keep separate from regular trash to ensure they are recycled correctly. Once sorted, TAG will be sent to Bermuda’s Materials Recovery Facility and regular trash will be disposed of at the Tynes Bay Waste to Energy Facility. KBB and Recycle Bermuda will conduct periodical waste audits throughout the event to monitor the sorting process.
In another step towards sustainability, 2022 saw the event move from paper tickets, pairing guides and course maps to a digital format. This year, the tournament will be implementing digital invitations and parking passes as well. All mentioned will be accessible via a smartphone, reducing paper waste significantly.
An Aspen spokesperson said “A continued partnership with Keep Bermuda Beautiful (KBB) will help to ensure that areas of Bermuda impacted directly by the tournament are kept in the state they were found and that the Butterfield Bermuda Championship leaves no trace. These areas include the ferry docking station, Whale Bay beach, Munro Beach Cottages beach and Pompano. The tournament staff is scheduled to partake in beach clean-ups to help maintain the coastline and areas of impact in Bermuda.”
Traci Burgess, KBB’s Executive Director, added "With large events such as this, it is critical that organisers, vendors, spectators and players take responsibility to reduce the amount of waste generated; promote reusable products; and encourage recycling. KBB is delighted to partner again with the Butterfield Bermuda Championship and Aspen. We learned many good lessons from last year's inaugural sustainability partnership and as a result have implemented additional steps to ensure the tournament is even more environmentally friendly.”
She continued by saying "KBB is grateful for Aspen’s continuing support of our collective efforts to provide a cleaner, greener, healthier and more beautiful Bermuda. We applaud Aspen for its unwavering focus on sustainability and its appreciation of the importance of reducing the environmental footprint of large events."