Zero Waste Events Initiative a Success

Date:
Oct 30, 2008

30 October 2008 - 10.01 am

A new zero waste events initiative introduced by the Queenstown Lakes District Council has already proved successful with local event managers.

Earlier this year the council launched a Zero Waste Events toolkit aimed at helping event managers design a waste management plan for their events, with tips and helpful ideas on how to hold a successful zero waste event.

"We are lucky to live in an area with such outstanding natural beauty and part of that is playing host to a range of local, national and international events held on a regular basis," QLDC solid waste manager Stefan Borowy said.

"These events are an important part of the Lakes District culture.  Our goal is to really minimise the effect they could have on the unique environment that is special to everyone who lives here," he said.

Two local events had already enjoyed success from adopting the zero waste philosophy.

Rippon Festival 2008, a music festival held in Wanaka, achieved an outstanding 85% waste diversion rate.

"Our goal for Rippon08 was to achieve an 80% diversion rate so we were really stoked with the result.  We're looking forward to working towards an even better result in 2010," Rippon08 director Lynne Christie said.

The festival committee was committed to minimising waste and maximising recycling in all areas of the festival, with an eventual goal of zero waste.

The American Express Queenstown Winter Festival had also achieved great results from its 2008 event.

"We really put the onus on stallholders to manage their own waste responsibly.  They were required to use compostable and recyclable packaging products from an approved list of suppliers and to remove their own residual waste from the festival site," Queenstown Winter Festival director Sally Feinerman said.

"The result was fantastic, everyone got into the spirit of it and we managed to divert 72% of the waste produced, from landfill," she said.

A key component of the new initiative was that the zero waste event form would become part of an event's resource consent or contract with the council.

"We felt that making zero waste a requirement for getting resource consent was really important.  The completed form will act as the waste management plan for the event and it's a good way for us to educate event managers and in turn event-goers about the importance of minimizing waste," Mr Borowy said.

ENDS:

For more information please contact Stefan Borowy on 03 441 0499

By: Tamah