As concerns about climate change continue to reverberate around the globe, every industry, lifestyle and person stands to be affected, regardless of political persuasion and socio-economic status. With dangerous storms and rising sea levels becoming more commonplace, yacht owners are finding themselves increasingly curious about the methods in which they, too, can participate in making more environmentally-friendly choices. Here are six ways you can make eco-conscious choices in hopes that by doing so, you can stay happily at your helms for years to come:
Fabric structures can offer a lot in the sustainability department—especially as slip covers or for more long-term dry storage needs. Choosing fabric over more traditional building materials stands to reduce your carbon footprint almost immediately. From the translucence of material that allows sunlight to fill a space during the day to less site preparation, the energy needed to build, heat and light a fabric structure tends to be pretty low.
Buy an Eco-Friendly Yacht
Believe it or not, there are a lot of eco-friendly—or at least eco-friendlier—luxury yacht options out there. Much of their design lies in the construction and hull, but at the top of the list is fuel efficiency that cuts down on emissions. For many, however, the desire to be more environmentally aware must still be weighed against whether or not such a yacht can still be extravagant. As greener and greener boats and even superyachts hit the market, it's becoming increasingly clear that luxury and environmental concerns needn't be mutually exclusive.
Greener propulsion is one big way yachts are becoming more eco-friendly. From diesel engines that are more fuel efficient to water jets that have much lower emissions, many designs are making use of combination propulsion tactics so that, depending on the needs of the user, propulsion can change with the flip of a switch. When speed and power are important, a more standard propulsion may be an option, but when a lower cruising speed can be utilized, switching over to a greener setting makes a lot of sense—not just from an environmental perspective, but from a fuel savings one as well.
Solar power continues its rise as a great source of energy, especially when it comes to powering a luxury vessel. From lighting to refrigeration, the electrical power needed on the open sea can, for the most part, be handled by well-positioned solar cells. As batteries and storage capacity get better and better, solar will eventually be an option that will work on even cloudy days.
It may be true that the vast majority of owners and enthusiasts may not come from the stereotypically tree-hugging set, but there's no reason that can't change. There's more than enough room at the table for anyone who's interested in joining the conversation about climate change and environmentalism. One simple way to make owning an extravagant boat more eco-friendly is to raise awareness. Even just a short conversation here and there with others at the club can have a positive effect on what people start to expect from their vessels. A rise in awareness will increase demand, which in turn, will undoubtedly escalate the supply of eco-friendly options.
Perhaps the most important on the list is fuel efficiency. It may not seem like it, but technology and eco-consciousness are influencing the design of even the biggest superyachts as more and more buyers come to expect wider ranges and lower gas intake.
So, there you go! You can keep your yacht and tackle the problems facing the planet at the same time.