On Friday 29th September at the Monaco Yacht Show, IYC hosted "Sustainability in Yachting: Leadership, Impact, Future Seminar," a seminar in partnership with social enterprise Common Seas. The stellar panel of speakers were invited to discuss the topic of sustainability in yachting. A collection of international press, yacht enthusiasts and industry professionals attended the event held at THE LOUNGE by IYC in Monaco.
The discussion, which was moderated by yachting journalist Julia Zaltzman, shone a light on the role that yachting plays in preserving the environment that sits at the very core of our industry, the ocean. A key panel of speakers, all of whom were selected for the demonstrable action they’ve shown in paving the way for a more sustainable future in yachting, were invited to take part and speak on their experience and actions to date.
The panel included:
Among the topics discussed, the panellists addressed the impact that yacht owners’ changing preferences and requirements have had on yachting, and how those in the sector have responded accordingly. Gaëlle Tallarida spoke of the Monaco Yacht Show’s efforts to champion small start-ups with initiatives such as the Sustainability Hub – which returns to the show this year for a second year running in 2023. She also highlighted the Energy Pact that the Show signed in 2022 in a bid to reduce its CO2 emissions by 60% within the next three years.
“It’s a challenging program for us but it’s all about the little details that accumulate to make real change,” she said. Natalie Quevert agreed, stating: “Our focus is on efficiency. The SEAIndex tool measures the carbon intensity of the boat and is designed to be a simple and easy comparison tool for owners to use.”
It’s a sentiment that was echoed by Simona Del Re, who said The Italian Sea Group’s shared aim is to help make owners more aware and to propose more sustainable solutions in yacht building. “Our yachts are full custom, so the final decision comes from the owner,” she said. “But what we can do is guide the owner through the process. As early as 2016, we delivered a yacht with hybrid propulsion, which was the largest hybrid yacht at that time. Since then, our R&D development has never stopped working on new alternative solutions.”
Outside of the maritime industry, it’s a similar story. Tom Cotter of OceanR, which
partnered with IYC earlier this year, highlighted key initiatives that the ethical clothing brand carries out that go beyond the immediate production process. “People, product and planet are the three words that we talk about from a sustainability stand point,” he said. “In addition to creating an enjoyable and ethical place of work, we plant around 400 mango trees every month and remove around 30,000 kilos of ocean plastic every year.”
Jo Royle, Founder of Common Seas, spoke of the Clean Blue Alliance, which is an ongoing initiative in the Maldives that shows how community partnerships can deliver practical, on-the-ground demonstrations of circular economy solutions. “We specialise in partnering with small island states, first collating data to better understand the plastic problem and build a baseline of plastic emissions, before working with the government and communities to develop strategies and solutions on how best to reduce at source,” she said.
The discussion closed with Raphael Sauleau, who highlighted the efforts being made within the brokerage company to assist owners with their decision-making. “We always place sustainability at the forefront of our messaging, which is why we take great pride in partnering with companies, such as Commons Seas and OceanR, to give them a voice within the yachting community,” he said. “Yacht owners are smart individuals who typically know what they want, and that carries over to the in-depth conversations we regularly have with them and the shipyards to ensure their usage, itineraries and design is as efficient and effective as it can be. It’s worth noting that this philosophy doesn’t only apply to new builds, but to refits, conversions, and brokerage too.”
The seminar closed with an audience Q&A session, followed by industry networking.
For more information on IYC’s partnerships at The Lounge by IYC, click here.