The Hero Dubai Desert Classic, a Rolex Series event currently being held at the Emirates Golf Club in Dubai, includes several key sustainability initiatives, making it the greenest event to date.
These measures aim to reduce waste and emissions, water consumption and save energy during this important year for the UAE. With UAE President His Highness Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan declaring 2023 the Year of Sustainable Development, the UAE government will seek to drive change when it hosts the COP 28 climate change conference later this year .
The focus on becoming a carbon-neutral event comes after DP World Tour announced that all five events in its 2023 Rolex Series will adopt sustainable approaches to help reduce its carbon footprint and contribute to climate mitigation.
Simon Corkill, Executive Event Director of the Hero Dubai Desert Classic, said: “With more emphasis than ever on protecting our planet, we all have a responsibility to ensure the environment is protected for ourselves, our children and future generations. Do your part on a collective journey.
“By joining forces with expert organizations in various fields, the ongoing Hero Dubai Desert Classic environmental initiative will help us deliver a more sustainable championship, aligned with initiatives such as the Dubai Clean Energy Strategy 2050 to mitigate climate change – all These will all help create a greener city that benefits residents and citizens.”
Initiatives introduced by the Hero Dubai Desert Classic include a high-quality filtered water dispenser system provided by Liquid of Life and Al Laith. A system of five dispensers installed around the Majlis pitch and in Tournament Town will reduce the use of approximately 40,000 single-use water bottles by players, caddies, officials and spectators throughout the tournament.
By installing the systems, the campaign supports Can Dubai, a sustainability initiative that aims to reduce single-use plastic water bottle waste in Dubai and raise awareness about plastic alternatives and sustainability issues.
Dulsco again worked with event organizers to oversee the waste management process. They will be responsible for collecting, transporting and disposing of all types of waste throughout the duration of the event.
As part of a partnership with Aggreko, the roof of the media center, which will house more than 150 journalists, has been covered in solar panels, while two 100-meter-long arrays of solar panels have been installed around the site.
To help reduce carbon emissions, organizers are encouraging visitors to travel on the Dubai Metro, as there is almost no Al Khail Metro station at the race site. For those who really want to drive, organizers have introduced limited on-site paid parking for Dh50 ($13.60) per car. The fee will be used to plant three mangrove trees locally, which will offset 2,000 miles of vehicle emissions over their lifetime. As part of the DP World Tour partnership, it will also fund the Central Mozambique Safe Water Programme, which will provide hundreds of households in rural areas of the country with a source of safe drinking water.
Organizers are also partnering with Goumbook, the UAE’s leading social enterprise, to achieve its goal of planting 2,000 seeds as part of the ‘Give a Ghaf planting programme’.
The national tree of the UAE, the Ghaf tree is drought resistant and probably the strongest plant in the desert environment. The planting program follows the vision of the UAE leadership to raise awareness of the living desert, the Ghaf tree and its value, encouraging people to plant native trees and conserve water.
At the event, members of the public will be able to take home pots containing the seeds and learn how to care for the seeds as they grow into Ghaf trees.
Additionally, a daily newsletter written and published by race partner Motivate Media Group has been printed on sustainable paper certified by the Program for the Endorsement of Forest Certification (PEFC).
At the Sustainability Corner in Tournament Town, adults and children can participate in DIY and urban farming workshops, which also offer lots of fun and informative activities.
As part of the Go for the Green initiative, the Sustainability Corner will also feature an event booth where people can pledge to be more environmentally friendly – whether it’s using reusable bags, recycling more or reducing food waste.
The environmental approach reaffirms the Hero Dubai Desert Classic’s commitment to sustainability and hosts a tournament with a smaller environmental footprint as the organizers strive to achieve GEO certification for the event, in alignment with the GEO Sustainable Golf Foundation.
Environmental measures also support the DP World Tour’s Green Drive Sustainability Initiative, which emphasizes intensified action on priority issues such as climate change; biodiversity loss; air and ocean pollution; and sustainable and ethical sourcing.
The Hero Dubai Desert Classic has already attracted some of the biggest names in golf. World number one and two-time champion Rory McIlroy tops the list of players, which also includes Tommy Fleetwood, Tyrell Hatton and Ryan Fox. – trade arab news agency