Boating NZ - - Boat World -

Auck­land’s Out­board Boat­ing Club (OBC) has re­tained its Blue Flag ac­cred­i­ta­tion – at­test­ing to the suc­cess of its en­vi­ron­men­tal and safety pro­gramme.

Copen­hagen-based Blue Flag is one of the world’s most recog­nised vol­un­tary eco-la­bels awarded to beaches, mari­nas, and sus­tain­able boat­ing tourism op­er­a­tors. To qual­ify for the Blue Flag, a se­ries of strin­gent en­vi­ron­men­tal, ed­u­ca­tional, safety and ac­ces­si­bil­ity cri­te­ria must be met and main­tained.

OBC first re­ceived ac­cred­i­ta­tion in 2017. Re­newal for the 2018–19 year fol­lowed a re­cent in­spec­tion by Mal­colm Pow­ell, a rep­re­sen­ta­tive from the Foun­da­tion for En­vi­ron­men­tal Ed­u­ca­tion, a Blue Flag agency. In New Zealand the Blue Flag pro­gramme is man­aged by Keep New Zealand Beau­ti­ful.

The pro­gramme aims to con­nect the pub­lic with its sur­round­ings and en­cour­ag­ing peo­ple to learn more about their en­vi­ron­ment. As such, en­vi­ron­men­tal ed­u­ca­tion ac­tiv­i­ties must be of­fered and pro­moted in ad­di­tion to a per­ma­nent dis­play of in­for­ma­tion rel­e­vant to the site in terms of bio­di­ver­sity, ecosys­tems and en­vi­ron­men­tal phe­nom­ena.

OBC is one of three New Zealand mari­nas with Blue Flag ac­cred­i­ta­tion – Westhaven and The Land­ing are the other two.

Mal­colm Pow­ell (left) dis­cusses the Blue Flag pro­gramme with Chris­tine White (Keep New Zealand Beau­ti­ful’s ed­u­ca­tion man­ager) and Mike Ragg, op­er­a­tions man­ager at OBC.

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