Most yachtsmen and cruise connoisseurs know more than others about the benefits and pleasures that we get from the nature that surrounds us ...
Environmentally Friendly Code of Conduct for Yachtsmen
Whether it's a happy splash in the clear tropical waters or a peaceful contemplation of wildlife in a quiet bay. Traveling the world aboard a yacht, we are fortunate enough to have access to some of the most beautiful and breathtaking scenery on the planet.
With this privileged access, we just have to be conscious and take responsibility for ensuring that these places remain pristine, both for our own enjoyment and for the wildlife that these amazing places are home to.
Sailing has a greater impact on wildlife than other water activities as it is widespread and relevant all year round. From fuel in the water to plastic bags that kill marine life, we cause significant damage to nature while sailing.
So how do we protect the sea and wildlife we love so much from these threats?
International Sailing Federation (World sailing) has developed guidelines aimed at educating yachtsmen and ensuring that sailing does not have a negative impact on the environment. Fortunately, by following them "Code of Environmentally Friendly Conduct", we can take a few simple steps and do our part to protect our unique blue planet. This is a good environmental practice for any yachtsman, and every small step can go a long way towards preserving natural resources.
Reducing the use of non-sustainable materials, reuse and recycling - these are the basic principles that we all know, but partially or completely ignore. The more we reuse materials, the less we will consume, and the more we recycle, the better it will be for all of us!
Environmentally Friendly Code of Conduct for Yachtsmen
Reduce packaging use and reuse whatever you can
Unfortunately, it's not uncommon to see plastic bags floating in the ocean these days. Getting rid of trash on board can be a big problem, especially in remote locations. But yachtsmen are resourceful, and it's time to get creative.
Avoid plastic bags when traveling and pack groceries in your own eco-friendly reusable shopping bags, which cost a penny and folds flat to fit in your backpack pocket. As a last resort, if you haven't been able to get rid of all the plastic bags, recycle them as trash bags instead of just throwing them away.
Buy products that don't require wrapping, or if there is no alternative, remove the packaging before loading them on board and dispose of them properly. When traveling, buying fresh produce from local markets, no one thinks about where their canned or dried produce comes from. Therefore, by buying local goods, you will not only support the economy of the area, but also reduce the emissions generated when sending goods to the international market.
Buy water and soft drinks in large bottles, or better yet, use a reusable and stationary water container. Refill small drinking bottles to minimize the amount of plastic on board.
Say no to paper plates and napkins. Paper plates may seem like a convenient and easy way to save money on water and dishes, but in some miraculous way they often end up overboard. Buy cookware made from stainless steel, durable plastic or melamine and a small investment will last for years. To reduce waste and increase storage space, use cloth towels instead of disposable towels and microfiber towels instead of paper towels. To disinfect and remove greasy stains, boil the wipes in clean water with a dishwashing detergent added.
Use environmentally friendly detergents and cleaners. Sometimes we forget that everything that goes down goes overboard. To minimize contamination, use biodegradable hygiene, detergents and cleaning products whenever possible. For the highly conscious, there is always the option of cleaning with vinegar and baking soda that do not damage surfaces and the environment.
Remember the golden rule: recycle, recycle, and recycle again and never, under any pretext, throw waste overboard! Garbage kills marine life, and plastic in particular is the main culprit. So if you've already taken it on board, keep it in the boat until you can dispose of it properly. Europe and the United States have relatively high recycling rates and recycling containers are often easy to find. Therefore, do not neglect nature and take advantage of them.
Set up a holding tank, as the wastewater is full of bacteria and viruses. It's bad for the environment and it's bad for humans. Swimming in water contaminated with sewage can cause many diseases. The vast majority of boats have tank cleaning capabilities at onshore pumping stations. If your boat is not one of them, take care of portable tanks. Use land-based toilets whenever possible as they are likely to provide proper wastewater treatment. If you desperately need to empty the tank, do so at least 3 miles offshore, but it's best never to. Wastewater discharges can have extremely negative impacts on marine life, especially in estuaries and bays.
To reduce engine use install LED lights and manual water pumps. Discard electrical appliances on board that are not vital. Instead of automatically starting the engine and burning fuel in calm weather, try drifting for a while if conditions permit.
Dispose of used oils and old engine filters properly. Never dump them overboard, no matter how far out at sea you are. If you are in an area where there are no appropriate disposal sites, ask your local gas station staff, or be prepared to store everything on board until you arrive at a major port.
Keep your engine in good conditionto avoid oil and fuel leakage into the water, the same applies to the refueling process. When your boat needs cleaning or maintenance, use environmentally friendly products instead of chemicals.
Protect marine life and your yacht from fouling. The special paint protects the ship's hull from colonization by microorganisms, and although it is toxic to them, the benefits of its use outweigh the damage that is caused to these organisms without it, and also improves the fuel efficiency of the boat. But remember that these toxins and heavy metals can be a significant source of marine sediment pollution, and they can travel through the food chain and are harmful not only to marine life, but also to humans.
Installation of solar panels Is the ideal way to reduce fuel consumption. Solar panel manufacturers have found ways to increase power while reducing size and cost. Passive energy production has never been easier or more efficient. In addition, installing a wind turbine and hydro generator will allow you to generate energy day and night, rain or shine.
Choose your anchorage carefully, as you can damage fragile algae and corals. When choosing a place to moor, anchor in the sand whenever possible, where you can see the bottom.
There is nothing more beautiful than a pristine beach and crystal clear waters, and nothing more depressing than a polluted coastline and drifting debris. It is extremely important to realize that the ocean and its inhabitants are very sensitive to our presence. Provide them with space and conditions for a healthy living. After all, if we don't take care of it, we will deprive ourselves of pleasure. After all, when the ocean provides us with all the conditions for recreation, we must keep it clean.
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