The conservation of the marine environment is fundamentally important to the ecosystems of humans, animals and plants. Oceans provide food and livelihoods for millions of people around the world and they produce more than half of the oxygen in the atmosphere, as well as absorbing most of the carbon from it. Beyond their role as the life force of the planet, our oceans provide wonder, beauty and enjoyment for all those who come into contact with them. No one enjoys the oceans more than the superyacht community, who have started to take the issue of environmental responsibility much more seriously in recent years. The challenger brand of the superyacht industry, Y.CO, has teamed up with Boat International and the Blue Marine Foundation to organise the Ocean Awards 2017, which will be held to recognise those working to sustain our environment for future generations. The event will be held in London on 11th January.
The Ocean Awards 2017 will celebrate individuals, companies, legislators and projects that have made outstanding contributions to the cleanliness of the oceans – an increasingly prevalent issue in today’s society. The partnership between the two companies is conducive to making a difference: Boat International, the luxury yachting industry’s leading media group, and Y.CO, one of the world’s leading yacht brokerages, are in unique positions to influence industry behaviour and raise awareness on the importance of the issue.
The awards are separated into eight categories, including ‘Visionary,’ ‘Local Hero,’ ‘Responsible Business,’ and ‘The Sailors for the Sea’ award, which recognises the individual or group from the seafaring community that has done the most to advance marine conservation. Previous winners of awards have included Marks & Spencer’s for its ‘Forever Fish’ campaign and Emily Penn, who won for her pioneering investigations into the amount of plastic found in oceans.
Y.CO has identified recent changes in yachting practices that aim to curtail the yachting industry’s impact on the environment, supporting ocean conservation.
Since many of the world’s most desirable yachting destinations are in remote locations, yacht charterers are increasingly interested in minimising their environmental imprint. These days, legislation is being continually updated to improve the situation. For example, yacht crews must ensure all plastic is properly disposed of and many clean regattas are taking place across the globe to underpin the importance of marine conservation.Marine conservation will provide a point of interest at this year’s Monaco Yacht Show: the Prince Albert of Monaco Foundation, which has a marked interest in reducing man’s carbon footprint, will be exhibiting at the event from 28th September until 1st October 2016. The foundation aims to make the world a greener place by encouraging sustainable development. The superyacht industry is once again positioning itself centre stage on this matter and becoming a vocal advocate of ecological sustainability.
Balancing the sustainability of the ocean with human demands for food, shipping, energy, coastal habitats and tourism is becoming an increasingly difficult challenge, but the yachting community has proven that it is more than up to the challenge by proactively making the changes necessary to sustain the ocean for future generations. The Ocean Awards 2017 are another step in the right direction and will draw more attention to this vital issue, while celebrating those who have made a positive difference.