Club Med has long positioned itself as a brand concerned with ocean conservation and other green causes. In its latest bid to advance this cause the company has launched the Bye Bye Plastic initiative to progressively eradicate single-use plastic items.
In all East and South Asia Pacific Club Med resorts, the initiative replaced disposable plastic cutlery with melamine, and plastic cups and straws with paper. Paper straws are provided upon request as part of its “Straw on Request” policy, which has been in place for the past few years through the Green Globe certification of the resorts.
A recent statistical report by the Ocean Conservancy revealed that out of the 8 million tonnes of plastic dumped in the ocean each year, more than half comes from Asia. The expanded use of disposable plastic packaging in the growing economies of Asia steers its plastic disposal rates towards a projected doubling increase in oceanic plastic waste to 250 million tonnes by the year 2020.
The International Coastal Cleanup (ICC) further generated a list of the top 10 most common beach litter, of which all were plastic. Plastic straws rank seventh alongside other common plastic wastes such as plastic wrappers, toothpaste tubes and plastic bottles.
After the launch of the “Straw on Request” policy, Club Med Phuket alone has seen an approximate 76% decrease in the use of plastic straws resort wide.
A new initiative started earlier this year was the Green Trident Project that was held across eight Asia Pacific Resorts. It focused on early education among children and youths, encouraging each child to pledge a simple action in which they would help to protect the environment.
These pledges were as simple as, “I pledge to turn off the tap when I brush my teeth” and were hand-pasted by each young guest onto a wall to make a green trident. Through active participation in activities involving the 3Rs of recycling – Reduce, Reuse, Recycle, Club Med hopes to plant the seeds of environmental awareness and develop their green awareness from an early age.