'The best way to predict the future, is to design it...'
Whilst Covid-19 is still tormenting our daily life, there are some positives to draw from this pandemic. This is now an opportunity to reset, to reflect on our current way of life, give the break our planet needed and perhaps its a wake up call to society. This pause is giving us the perfect opportunity to come back more constructive and less destructive.
And on today, Earth Day, more than ever we can start to think about the changes we want to make. You may or may not know that the inspiration for the first Earth Day in 1970 actually came from the oceans, following the devastating 1969 Gulf oil spill. The day was founded to demonstrate support for environmental protection and to this day is still striving to do so. In light of Earth Day, we wanted to positively reflect on how the yachting industry has started to create sustainable change.
Shipyards making waves
From Oceanco’s true zero emissions cruising with Black Pearl, Feadship’s Savannah and its eco-friendly hybrid propulsion platform to Royal Huisman’s, Etherel and its rechargeable batteries, there have been plenty of yards stepping up to the sustainability challenge. And many more continue to dip their toes in the sustainable waters, from REV is currently in the build process, a vessel designed for marine research, Arksen, an eco conscious company designing yachts from recyclable materials to the series of new solar catamarans by Silent Yachts. With much more to come, huge scope and exciting projects in the pipelines who knows what sustainable yachts will be floating on our oceans in the next few years.
A community of crew
Sometimes in todays world of constant connection and information overload things can seem overbearing but if facilitated in the right and positive ways, it really can change our world. Both online and offline we can see the yachting community coming together more and more to create sustainable changes. Throughout social media platforms we have seen various ways from sharing knowledge, different ideas, to experiences in adapting to sustainable alternatives, there has been a huge increase in crew stepping up to the challenge. With specific ambassadors of change across Instagram such as @gggreen_yachts, @thegreenstewardess, @the.green.stew, @consciousstew, just to name a few, as well as the many Facebook groups whereby crew are sharing their journeys on how to run a more sustainable yacht. Keep your eyes peeled, we at Seastainable will be recruiting our own group of at sea ambassadors in the future to join and expand these growing communities.
More collaboration, less competition
Another positive change we have started to see within our industry are the collaborations and partnerships, uniting in our common issue of making the industry more sustainable and the oceans healthier. Various yachting companies have created eco conscious brands, from luxury toiletries, galley alternatives, sustainable uniforms to everyday cleaning products. Whilst, the yacht brokers and shipyards have also taken a concern to our marine environments, through examples of partnerships such a Princess Yachts and Marine Conservation Society, Sunseeker and Blue Marine, Moonen Yachts and Plastic Soup Foundation, Fraser and Plastic Oceans. When it comes to sustainability, collaboration is fundamental in developing solutions and solving issues, together.
From the top
Back in 2018, the International Maritime Organisation (IMO) and the United Nations put in place a series of sustainable objectives for the industry to adhere to. They stated that by 2050 the global fleet, applying to the totality of the industry, including superyachts, must cut carbon emissions by half of the 2008 levels. This was a real stepping stone and going forward, we want to see more pre-emption when it comes to regulation, especially more specific to the yachting industry.
So, this Earth Day, whilst you stay home/onboard we challenge the industry to stop for at least the length of a coffee break and ponder what it is you have done, are already doing or are going to do to make our industry more sustainable. Whatever part you play in the industry, you are important and next Earth Day we hope you or your company have pledged to create more change.
Happy Earth Day!