All surfers automatically have an invested interest in nature and the preservation of the oceans.
By introducing thousands of surfers to the ocean every year we’re hoping to make more people aware of the ongoing challenges and motivate them help take care of it.
We sat down with Operations Manager John Jacobsen who is responsible for the day-to-day running of the surf camps at Lapoint. John has direct contact with all the camp managers and our partners, and with it, the ability to adapt and implement our Sustainability Program in all Lapoint surf destinations.
Hi, John. You’re the main man to talk to regarding the implementation of our sustainability program. Can you elaborate a bit on the program and why and how it started?
– As with most of what we do at Lapoint, this initiative is driven by interest and passion. Being dependent on the environment and healthy oceans to do what we love we’re committed to preserve nature and our local communities as best as we can.
– In doing so we’ve been involved with beach clean ups since day one, whilst continuously improving the environmental aspects of our operations as a whole. In addition to the local efforts of our dedicated staff around the world we’ve recently teamed up with the Nordic Ocean Watch foundation and appointed Simen #Tavaha Knudsen our Sustainability Manager to help maximise the positive impact of our efforts.
– Our goal is to make all our surf camps as sustainable as possible, ultimately leading by example in the community and the industry as a whole, hopefully inspiring our competitors to follow.
Which initiatives are currently (being) implemented at Lapoint’s surf camps?
– Lapoint is always striving to find the most sustainable solutions possible. These are the initiatives we have in place and are currently implementing:
Reduction of plastic use:
Minimizing the use of one-time products at camps – no use of plastic knives or forks.
Minimizing the use of plastic in the kitchens and food service.
Free drinking water at most camps, giving guests an attractive alternative to buying plastic water bottles.
Test project of ecological surf wax in our surf school.
Organically produced tote bags for sale at the camps, drastically reducing the need for guests to use plastic bags. All profits go to the Nordic Ocean Watch foundation.
Offer and promote use of reusable glasses instead of one-time cups for all meals.
Use and sales of stainless steel bottles – test project in Bali which will be implemented shortly in all camps.
Showing the way:
Beach clean-ups at all the surf camps regularly throughout the year.
Recycling at camps – dividing of waste material into separate bins.
No tuna is sold or offered at our camps around the world.
Spreading the message:
Ambassadors and staff are urged to pick up minimum 3 plastic pieces from each surf session. #Plukkanopp
Urge guests to generally minimize the use of plastic e.g. in the welcome speech and camp communication.
Are these initiatives something that requires a lot of resources from an operation point of view?
– There is definitely extra work involved with this, but we’re happy to do it.
For instance, Costa Rica has very little recycling opportunities, but we gladly invest in the extra manpower and organization efforts needed to make it work also there.
– We’re running a complex business with different regulations and challenges in each destination, but we always go the extra mile if needed to optimize the positive impact we can make in each community, for the greater good of our planet. These efforts are equally valued by guests, staff and the local communities.
Can you account for our current eco-footprint now compared with a couple of years ago? And what’s in store for the future?
– We’ve come a long way in the last few years and through the ongoing cooperation with Simen and Nordic Ocean Watch we have a lot of positive momentum for the future. Sustainability is a journey, and we always strive to become better: more sustainable. On this journey it is important to celebrate what we manage to accomplish, even if it is small.
– In short, we are madly in love with surfing and the oceans and are deeply committed to do our part in terms of preservation, education and positive contributions going forward.
All surfers want healthy oceans and as a species humans are dependant on nature and rich marine wildlife.
Although separately our initiatives don’t seem like much, together they morph into a valuable wave of eco-goodness. As a growing company with 200+ employees and ambassadors, we are motivated to spread the message of an active approach towards a more sustainable future.
We will continuously publish articles on this blog, with tips and tricks on how to become a greener surfer & traveller as well as showcase what we’re doing at our camps around the world.
If you have ideas on how we as a surf camp operator can be even greener, please send your inputs and thoughts to: firstname.lastname@example.org. We look forward to hearing your thoughts.