Quiksilver has held the Bali Big Eco Weekend at Kuta Beach on the 22nd June 2013 together with Coca-Cola Amatil Indonesia, and their new partner Garuda Indonesia. This event got the hands of thousands of people dirty removing the trash on Kuta Beach, as part of a clean-up campaign initiated by Quiksilver, Coca-Cola Amatil Indonesia, and Garuda Indonesia.
Bali’s Big Eco Weekend gathered Australian surf legends, thousands of locals and tourists in a series of eco-friendly activities including removing tons of trash in less than an hour, followed by donating 50 trees to the Bendesa Adat of Kuta, and a release of over 1,000 sea turtles to their natural habitat, followed by Uluwatu Challenge the next day.
Bali has long been a tourism hotspot, pulling in 3 million holidaymakers in 2012. The top country of origin supplying tourists to Bali in 2012 was Australia, contributing 27.12 percent to the total number of tourist arrivals. This is why Quiksilver specifically invited world-champion surfers like Mark Richards, Martin Potter as well as iconic surfers such as Jake Paterson, Matt Hoy, Peter McCabe and the inventor of the 3-fin surfboard Simon Anderson to Bali’s Big Eco Weekend 2013 knowing that they will set a good example for their fan bases at home.
“Quiksilver Indonesia has been concerned and actively involved in the sustainability of Bali’s environment, as a market leading surf company that was founded by surfers we are proud to invite some of the worlds most renown surfers to Bali for this weekend of events,” says SEA CEO Quiksilver, Paul Hutson. “The awareness raised by their involvement and the invitation for non professional surfers to compete against them up at Uluwatu will hopefully raise more concern to other fragile iconic surf destinations in Indonesia than just Kuta beach.” Paul added.
Australia’s Martin Potter, 1989 World Surfing Champion, feels very strongly about where the planet is headed in general and specifically wants to help turn things around in Bali.
“I’ve been coming to Bali since 1982, and as you know there have been a lot of changes and not a lot of them good as far as the environment is concerned,” says Potter. “It’s now a big problem and we’ve got to help the Balinese people and get them to understand how to protect their paradise here. I want my kids and their kids to be able to enjoy Bali the way I have, and I think the best way is for us to help is educate the local people, starting with the kids. That’s the only way it will happen.”
Four-time World Champion (1979-1982) Mark Richards echoed Potter’s sentiments, saying, “Bali is such a beautiful place, a spiritual island, and nobody wants to see it with rubbish everywhere. The first time I came to Bali and surfed Uluwatu was around 1980. We had board carriers then as we had to trek through the bush and climb down a bamboo ladder into the cave. Such an amazing difference from today. Look what surfing has done, how important it is now to the lives of so many of the locals. And we don’t want to destroy this, we want to help preserve it.”
This is the second year that Richards has come to Bali to be part of the Bali Big Eco Weekend, as he truly appreciates what Quiksilver and Coca-Cola have been doing. “I’m excited and encouraged by the efforts of Quiksilver and Coca-Cola here in Bali,” he explained. “A lot of people think that these big companies always take-take-take and never give back, but here are two companies that have been helping out in the community since 2008 with beach cleaning, education and more. It’s really great to see their commitment and I hope that others will follow their lead.” Garuda Indonesia has already done so, by joining up with Quiksilver and Coca-Cola earlier this year, and it is hoped that more will soon follow.
The Quiksilver Uluwatu Challenge, a team challenge surfing competition with a number of Quiksilver surf legends as captains of the teams, was held the next day at Uluwatu as part of the Bali Big Eco Weekend. In this event, Quiksilver legends Mark Richards, Martin Potter, Jake Paterson, and Matt Hoy all contributed replica’s of their historic game-changing surfboards, as well as Simon Anderson (inventor of the thruster -3 fin surfboard design) and 11-time World Champion Kelly Slater. The bidding was fast and furious, especially for the Mark Richards surfboard that topped the money list, going for a heady $6,500 to lucky grom Mikala Waterfield (whose dad happens to be Bruce Waterfield from Coca-Cola.)
All up, almost $10,000 was raised with the surfboard auction together with the entry fee proceeds, which will be going towards solving the current water pollution issues at Uluwatu as well as cleaning up Bali’s beaches, educating the local communities on environmental and health issues, protecting the Kuta Beach Sea Turtle population, and help Bali’s Lifeguards protect the tourists and locals.