Nowadays, everything and everyone is going ‘green’ in an effort to reduce our effects on this beautiful, blue earth. “71% of the Earth’s surface is water-covered, and oceans hold about 96.5% of all Earth’s water.” Boaters should be particularly concerned about taking action to protect our marine environment. Below are just some of the ways boaters and marine enthusiasts can help to minimize their impact on bodies of water.
This includes maintenance and product updates whenever possible. Regularly monitoring your fluids helps to prevent discharges and leaks, which can spill into the water and contaminate it. Additionally, the type of anti-fouling paint you use may be toxic for the environment. Sloughing bottom paints and copper based paints release toxins and biocides on the environment. Many of these paints have been banned or regulated, and as a result there are several replacements that reduce the impact on the environment. Replacing old parts and energy systems with new ones can decrease the need for oil, reducing the potential for oil spills and greenhouse gas emissions. Solar panels, bio-diesel, LED lights, wind generators, and electrical engines are just some of the modifications one can make to their boats or yachts to become more green and energy efficient.
Part of maintaining your boat is keeping it clean. Cleaners and soaps often times have chemicals, such as triclosan, which has been proven to be bad. Triclosan is bad for the marine environment because it can have effects on algae’s ability to photosynthesize and additionally cause biomagnification to occur. Biomagnification is the process in which a toxin becomes more concentrated as it goes up the food chain, causing havoc on the marine life throughout the process. Eco-friendly products for your boat cleaning needs are easy to find. Check out this boat cleaning supply list for environmentally friendly and biodegradable products.
‘Pack It In, Pack It Out’
This age old adage applies not only to land but to sea. The purpose behind this is to keep the wilderness wild and ‘untouched’. Basically, be kind to the environment and dispose of trash, waste, and hazardous materials properly. Marine debris is not just harmful for aquatic creatures, but also for humans enjoying the open ocean or beaches. Marine debris injures, traps, and chokes marine animals, physically harms beach goers and swimmers, and can get into the internal parts of boats. According to the E.P.A., in 2001, over 140,000 people across the U.S. removed about 3.6 million pounds of debris from more than 7,700 miles of coasts, shorelines, and underwater sites. Recycling, using biodegradable products, and managing waste holding tanks are some of the many actions boaters should take to prevent debris and water from entering our water.
Green Boating is Better Boating
There is no denying that if we want to continue enjoying a yachting and marine lifestyle, we must vigilantly protect our oceans. Not only are we protecting aquatic life, but our own, and the lifespans of our boats. Keep our oceans blue and your boating green.