The boating industry benefits enormously from long summers and hot weather, as more people look to invest in boats and spend time on the water. However, due to climate change, we are now experiencing extreme heat that can even make sailing uncomfortable, and in some cases, dangerous. For example, the summer of 2018 was labelled the “joint hottest summer of record”, whilst temperatures surpassed 40C in the UK for the very first time in July 2022. Therefore, it is vital that the entire sector prioritises sustainability and plays its part in the fight against climate change.
Val Wyatt and the SME Climate Commitment
As part of our pledge to preserving the environment, we signed up to the SME Climate Commitment, whereby we are targeting net zero emissions before 2050, whilst sharing our progress each year. Our efforts in this field also saw us become the first marina in the UK to receive an award for our decision to remove single-use plastic from our site. Meanwhile, we are also proud members of British Marine, and as part of this, we are fully behind The Green Blue, a joint environmental initiative between the organisation and the Royal Yachting Association.
Top sustainability tips for boat owners to consider
Here are our top sustainability tips for boat owners wanting to remain as green as possible…
Recycle, recycle, recycle!
This one is rather obvious but making sure you recycle is an important part of any effort to be as sustainable as possible. If you’re heading out for the day with friends and family on a larger boat – for instance the Interboat Intender 950 Cabrio – you’ll want to ensure they are well fed and hydrated, especially in the summertime. As a result, it is likely you’ll end up with an abundance of bottles, cans and cartons at the end of the day. We have recycling stations within our marina, but if you don’t have access to such facilities, you could use an online directory like www.recyclenow.com – what a brilliant website!
Boat owners should also be aware that washing water from their vessels will go into the same broads and rivers they are using. As a result, they should look to use phosphate-free detergents and other non-toxic products when cleaning the plates, glasses and cutlery after a day on the water. Graywater, which also includes waste from onboard showers, is a major polluter of the marine environment. Also consider how you dispose of your sewage from your boat too.
Our expert team delivers a wide portfolio of maintenance solutions, and where possible, we will avoid using products that are not environmentally friendly. We continue to test a variety of biodegradable and non-toxic cleaning products to ensure we are minimising our own impact on the environment.
In fact, we are currently exploring alternatives to anti-foul paints, including ultrasonic systems, and look forward to bringing those solutions to market soon. We are delighted to stock recycled plastic docklines from Marlow Ropes too.
Reduce fuel usage
Reducing the amount fuel you use will benefit the environment – and this doesn’t mean cutting down on trips.
How you maintain your boat will have a huge bearing on fuel consumption and sustainability. For example, if you do not regularly anti-foul your boat it will suffer from a build-up of marine growth, which impacts speed and performance. As a result, the engine will have to work harder and will use more fuel in the process.
An effective maintenance programme
Fuel usage and engine maintenance is also directly linked.
As part of your annual maintenance programme, we urge you to have a professional look over your engine. We have written a detailed blog on what you can expect, as well as other tasks you can carry out yourself to protect your engine.
Outboard engines have come a long way over recent years and there are now more and more options readily available to prospective boat owners that offer greater levels of cleanliness and efficiency. Why not talk to our expert team about the latest options?
Carefully consider where you stop!
If you enjoy sailing offshore then research proper anchoring techniques to prevent damage to the seabed, including to important ecosystems and wildlife. If you are sticking to in-land waterways then use common sense before mooring your boat. Whilst in most cases, a boat is normally allowed to moor almost anywhere alongside a towpath in the UK, it is vital that you protect the riverbank as best you can. Using a fixed pontoon is even better!
Choose a marina that prioritises the environment
A marina is more than just a place to store your boat. For example, at Val Wyatt Marine we have built a community where customers become friends and share their experiences. Choose a marina that focuses on sustainability and utilising green technologies. For example, we have installed EV chargers for those boat owners with electric cars, whilst we regularly hold social events designed to improve the environment, including river clean ups!
Do you want to know more about our commitment to the environment? Do you have a question about our range of boats or the services we provide? Speak to our team of experts by filling out this form, or by calling 01189 403211.
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