The secret is in the so-called three R’s of eco-friendly sailing – reduce, reuse and recycle. Let’s take a closer look at some tips and techniques that can help you be more sustainable and evaluate your impact.
First of all, it’s important to reduce your speed and navigate carefully especially when sailing around sensitive areas full of marine life. It’s crucial not to disturb the natural habitat and to make sure we are aware if we are sailing in any marine protected areas.
Second, reduce your sewage. Putting paper and other items down the head is definitely not a good idea. Also, in case you have a holding tank installed go ahead and use it. Just remember to check the discharge legislation and empty the holding tank at least 3 miles from shore.
Furthermore, it’s important to reduce pollution. This can be done by avoiding products with bleach or other strong chemicals. Using environmentally friendly products is also good for you and your health. Another thing you can do is making sure the engine is well maintained and not leaking fuel or oil. We advise you to consider using a drip tray for preventing leakage. Last but not least, be careful when refuelling, we don’t want to spill fuel in the water accidentally.
Lastly, reduce your impact by anchoring with care. This relates to what we mentioned by lowering the speed. Making sure not to disturb vulnerable species is a priority. So, if there are secure mooring balls use them instead.
The next step to eco-friendly sailing is reusing. This is something many people do even in their daily lives, so it’s not hard to apply. Get some reusable bottles for drinks and other sustainable eating utensils. Reuse products as much as possible and forget about plastic. Especially plastic bags since there are so many great bags made from recycled sails and other materials around.
It’s essential to minimize the amount of waste you make. This can be done quickly by removing the packaging of items that you don’t need and recycling it before you go on board. You can also recycle on your boat, however, if you don’t have much space that could be harder. Even if that is the case, small items can still be recycled, and things like cigarette butts should not be thrown overboard but kept until you can dispose of them correctly onshore.
These last two are very simple, and we are confident you are already doing it, but still, it’s worth mentioning. First, make sure you prevent rubbish from being blown overboard by the wind and never dump waste at sea.
In case you couldn’t get rid of all non-reusable items, make sure you store them on board and dispose of them at a recycling centre when you can. The turtles will be very grateful. Unfortunately, not all sailing destinations offer the same recycling options. Some countries have highly developed facilities, while others are still working on it. If you want to go green and become an eco-friendly sailor, you can always research your list of destinations to see which ones offer this sustainability factor you are looking for.
The one we can suggest is Slovenia. According to National Geographic, this is the World’s Most Sustainable Country, and its green tourism is widely known. It is also one of the top 5 sailing destinations for beginners!
Well, what do you think? Isn’t it pretty easy to be an eco-friendly sailor? Sailing is fantastic for many reasons, and we believe the ability to harness the forces of nature and take advantage of the wind, solar, and hydropower is one of the things that make it absolutely fantastic.
Do you have any tips to keep sailing eco-friendly? Share your tips and ideas on our Facebook Page or in the comments below. And remember, Tubber and our experts are always here to help choose the best destination for you with your way of sailing in mind!