Welcome back! We’re excited to unveil to you new boats, brands and special projects on DESTINATION - SAILING in 2018. Top of our list is the most precious entity for every sailor: the sea. The pleasure of discovering new destinations comes with a responsibility to keep our oceans clean – not just for the safety of marine life, but for us sailors too. Here’s why:
What We’re Sailing In
Around 9 million tonnes of plastics spill into the ocean every year – an astonishing 300kg per second! From shopping bags to fishing gear, the dumped plastic waste is now a global issue that researchers warn has devastating consequences. But there is hope.
During the 2015 Transat Jacques Vabre race, multi award-winning skipper Yvan Bourgnon was forced to withdraw from the contest when his boat struck a container. This collision happened just two years after he noticed several unidentified objects hitting his boat during a separate transoceanic competition. Soon after, Bourgnon founded The Sea Cleaners, a crowdfunded association currently building the revolutionary MANTA ship, specially designed to pick up, sort and compact large quantities of floating macroplastic waste at sea.
Odyssey of Hope
Even more dangerous to humans and sea creatures are the unseen microplastics that billions of people are unknowingly consuming every day. An average of 11 000 pieces of microplastics are eaten by seafood lovers each year, while plastic-contaminated water still exists in some of the most developed countries such as France, the USA and Germany to name a few.
Sharing their knowledge of sustainable solutions to anthropogenic pollution is the team at Race for Water . In 2017, their sailors embarked on an epic Odyssey of Hope, due to end in 2021. This is their second oceanic tour promoting real technical solutions to the world’s decision-makers in an effort to help preserve our oceans. While on board a uniquely integrated solar-hydrogen-kite-powered vessel, the team will demonstrate the benefits of energy transition currently taking place and how protecting our seas will save future generations.
“What we actually do here, and in the middle of Asia, or wherever, has a direct effect on the oceans – and what the oceans do then reflects back on us.”
~ David Attenborough
As part of our non-profit segment, DESTINATION - SAILING is committed to bringing attention to worthy causes, just like the projects in today’s feature. We welcome all our readers to submit names of oceanic sustainability programmes and products you feel others should know about. Submit your chosen project/ product to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Once-off or monthly donations can be made to The Sea Cleaners at theseacleaners.org
Follow the Race for Water crew throughout their Odyssey of Hope expedition via the blog at odyssey.raceforwater.org.
Photography by Sébastien Rohner
Words by Shalagh-Ann Fredericks