Can Yachts be Eco-friendly?

published Oct 10, 2023
1 min read

While often connected to opulence and luxury living, yachts have also been associated with overindulgence and environmental harm. However, in more recent years, the yachting industry has been working hard to make these vessels more environmentally sustainable in line with the world’s commitment to reduce our carbon footprint.

How is this happening?

Hybrid and electric propulsion

The main source is pollution from yachting is propulsion, especially when it comes to motoryachts. As a result, the industry has prioritised research and investment into new ways of propulsing yachts across the ocean.

These innovations aim to protect both the ocean floor and the surrounding atmosphere – all while enhancing the performance of yachting fuel engines.

As well as other forms of propulsion, the yachting industry is also putting more effort into researching other greener yachting solutions:

  • The use of electric motors
  • Yachts that can convert solar and wind power into renewable energy
  • Biofuels (for example, GTL and HVO)
  • Hybrid yachts

Waste management

Determining how to best manage resources and waste on board yachts is another avenue the industry is looking into. Many yachts are now equipped with waste recycling facilities and advanced wastewater treatment systems.

For example, yachts that have water filtration systems so yacht workers can enjoy unlimited water while on shift, and avoid drinking from single-use bottles.

More conscious management teams

As well as making changes to the yachts themselves, there is also a drive to train yacht crews and charter companies to be more aware of ways they can promote eco-friendly yachting. Overhauling yacht management to advise staff about the greenest yacht practices can help them respect the protected areas of the oceans.

They can do this by:

  • Opting for green cleaning products like eco-friendly detergent, dishwashing soap, etc
  • Choosing green hygienic products like soap and shampoo bars
  • Encouraging the use of reef-safe sun creams and washable, reusable cleaning wipes

Lightweight Materials

For yacht designers, a move towards more lightweight and eco-friendly materials is another way they’re dedicated to making these vessels more environmentally sustainable. These eco-responsible materials use an environmentally friendly production process but also use limited resources in the product-making process, too.

Popular materials yacht designers are researching include plant fibres like flax, bamboo, and hemp which are all durable, recyclable, and of course, eco-friendly. While flax, for example, is often used in household furnishings, it can easily be transformed into a more composite material like flax or basalt fibre which can be used in the production of hulls and superstructures.

For those in the yachting industry, the drive to make these vessels more environmentally sustainable is at the forefront of research and innovation efforts. In time, there is a hope that yachts can become just as associated with luxury, as they do a greener future.