Single-use plastic water bottles will not be sold at 2019 Open
The R&A has decided not to sell single-use plastic water bottles at the Open, replacing them with refilling stations around Portrush, stainless steel bottles and recycled aluminium cans.
“The Open has a close relationship with nature and the coastal system of the world’s finest links courses and it is important that we safeguard them for future generations,” said Martin Slumbers, CEO of the R&A.
“We have all learned so much of the destructive impact of plastic in the world’s oceans and we believe we have to take steps to remove all single-use plastic water bottles from the Open in order to encourage fans and players to use alternative and more sustainable materials.”
Some 5,000 stainless steel bottles will be given to fans for free as they enter the venue, and more will be on sale for less than £5 inside the venue. Players will have an engraved version, available to buy from the club shop.
“Sport offers a unique opportunity to engage with a global audience on environmental issues,” said Daniel Cooney, Comms Director for UN Environment.
“We commend this initiative to tackle marine plastic pollution. The Open offers a powerful platform to influence how people think about drinking water and its associated impact on the natural environment.”
The ‘Open Water’ initiative, supported by the UN’s Environment Clean Seas campaign, aims to promote concerns regarding global marine plastic pollution.