Tiree Wave Classic Leads the Way in Environmental Responsibility
Kirsty Alexander, Project Officer for Tiree Development Trust, said: ' In the fragile environment we have on the island where growing tourism and sporting activity increases the pressure on both land and sea; access rights and responsibilities have become even more important. Argyll Estates, Tiree land owners, Crofters, The Crofter's Commission, RSPB, SNH all have interests on the island and we are doing everything to ensure that both visitors and islanders are aware of their access rights and the obligations and responsibilities that go hand in hand with the enjoyment of this unique landscape.
'The Tiree Wave Classic attracts more than 600 people from all over the UK to the island for the competition and adventure activities. This, together with a great deal of print and broadcast media attention, gives us a perfect platform in which to set the right standards for a permanent year round awareness campaign for access rights and responsibilities on the island. For this to work the island community must be consulted at every stage and be fully involved in the process.'
The event's Environmental Charter, supported by The Tiree Development Trust, must be signed by all sailors before they can compete. This one page document makes them aware of the fact that the interaction between water, air and land is nowhere more evident than on the isle of Tiree a mix that has led to a diverse range of habitats and eco-systems. Large tracts of the island have been nationally and internationally designated as sites of special scientific interest, special areas of conservation and special protection areas. In signing this charter competitors agree to abide by a code of conduct that ensures they respect and protect their environment, whilst acting responsibly and considerately for the duration of their stay on the island.
Another key feature of the Charter is that both competitors and the event management team agree to measurable yet achievable environmental, social and business targets including zero incidence of fly tippng, blown waste or littering; zero public complaints regarding competitor behaviour; zero incidence of harm to birds or mammals; no permanent damage to land and flora, zero incidence of uncontrolled / unauthorised fires and a measured increase in retail trade from previous weeks.
Two pages of the Tiree Wave Classic event brochure have been dedicated to access rights on the island, highlighting the Scottish Outdoor Access Code and the of land users and land owners all year round.