Chewstick Releases “Beachfest Green” Report

November 8, 2014

A waste impact report on Bermuda’s Beachfest Emancipation Celebration has been released, outlining some of the key findings surrounding the environmental challenges and successes of this popular annual event.

“When we officially started Beachfest in 2006, it was as a response to the longstanding Bermuda tradition of going to Horseshoe Bay for Emancipation Day,” said Chewstick Foundation’s Executive Director, Gavin Djata Smith.

“Our goal was to create a unified celebration of this major holiday pastime, adding entertainment, sports and activities, and amenities like concessions, trash cans, porta-loos, and site management to make a vibrant event that would celebrate the local tradition, as well as attract attendees from all over the world and be a great addition to the Cup Match season.”

Chewstick said,  “Beachfest has somewhat become a victim of its success, attracting thousands, who routinely bring an entire picnic campsite and leave behind a lot of debris. No other public event sees attendees bring the level of personal infrastructure that is seen at Beachfest”.

The slideshow below contains almost 100 photos from this year’s BeachFest:

“After several years of managing waste in conjunction with the Department of Parks, this year The Chewstick Foundation sought input and some assistance from local environmental experts. Volunteer Antonia Issa led the group, focused on a plan which included waste management practices, and branded this year’s event as Beachfest Green

“The collaborative effort brought together several organizations, including BEST, the Department of Works and Engineering’s Waste Management Section, Catlin End-to-End, Greenrock and Keep Bermuda Beautiful [KBB] alongside The Chewstick Foundation and the Department of Parks.

“Albeit with several significant challenges along the way, the end result was not only that Horseshoe Bay was ready for public use the following day, but also the formation of a new collaborative body The Green Cooperative. This new initiative evolved out of Beachfest Green with a commitment to focus on raising awareness and best practices for waste management for public events in Bermuda.

“Founding members of The Green Cooperative are BEST, Greenrock, KBB, The Chewstick Foundation, Catlin End-to-End, W&E Waste Management Section and the Department of Parks.”

KBB Executive Director Anne Hyde, acting as spokesperson for The Green Cooperative stated, “We applaud The Chewstick Foundation for their efforts to make environmental improvements to the annual Beachfest Emancipation Day celebrations and are thrilled to assist them in issuing their Beachfest Green 2014 Waste Report.”

Chewstick added that this is the “first time that a report, in consultation with community organisations, has quantified the environmental impact of Bermuda’s celebrants at this annual event and seeks to combat the lack of awareness and personal responsibility that would help lessen the environmental impact of large scale public events such as Beachfest.

“The results of this report can help inform people and assist with key decisions to shift the beliefs that have resulted in increased waste and a lack of personal responsibility across events on the island.

“The Chewstick Foundation urges Government and community stakeholders to take heed of the information in the report, and to lend their voices to eliciting a much needed change in waste management and personal responsibility for events island-wide.”

View the Report at www.beachfestbermuda.com or below [PDF here]

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Category: All, Environment

Comments (3)

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  1. Micro says:

    A unified celebration, rife with underaged drunkenness.

  2. Triangle Drifter says:

    Why is it so difficult for people to take out what they bring in? The contents of the coolers are gone. The ice has melted. Hopefully they have put their trash in the more than ample trash containers provided. There really is not much to take out.

    I have spent many nights using US state & National Parks. The pack out what you take in applies to all of them. Large dumpsters are provided at convenient locations.

    What is the problem with Bermudians that they cannot take care of their own parks & beaches?

  3. X man says:

    Beach Feast should be held on the Saturday after Cup Match.
    Heres Why’
    [1] It extends the Cup Holiday Activities to 3 days
    [2] it dos’nt collide or have an effect on the Cup Match Traffic
    [3] so that it dosnt take away the essential resourses from Cupmatch – such as EMT/Medical Services and Fire Dept.
    [4] and most importantly it dos’nt stretch Police services to thin.

    I believe if it was held on the Saturday after Cup Match it could more controlled to.
    Anyway it looks like its here to stay.