Green Technologies at the Forefront at METSTRADE 2017
Even people who can afford a luxury motor yacht, shouldn’t have to spend more on marine fuel than they have to. In fact, fuel is probably the largest expense of motor yacht ownership, with an average yearly cost of about $2000-2500 per foot!
Fuel economy and efficiency are not the only factors driving the development of alternative propulsion technology for motor yachts. The yachting industry as a whole has been pushing to be greener and reduce the impact that recreational boating has on the marine environment.
In fact, at the 2017 Marine Equipment Trade Show (METSTRADE) which just wrapped up, running from November 14th – 16 in Amsterdam, sustainability and green technologies was one of the most pervasive themes of the conference.
The METSTRADE Show is the world’s largest and most visited B2B leisure marine equipment show and Superyacht showcase.
Many developers of battery systems and other hybrid technology integrators for hybrid yachts were key exhibitors at the show. Speaking to NauticExpo Magazine, Engel-Jan de Boer, with Lloyd’s Register, one such exhibit at METS, said, “Lloyd’s Register (LR) has been involved with many yacht-related hybrid projects, from sailing to motor yachts.” LR develops battery packs for hybrid systems. De Boer went on to say that, “By ensuring that the likelihood of fire propagation in battery packs is minimized, and by carrying out sensible risk assessments in conjunction with an appropriately trained crew, these propulsion systems are set to significantly gain market share.”
A spokesman for another battery developer, DNV GL, said, “We see hybrid and electric propulsion as one of the most important new trends, especially for the leisure and yacht segments.”
Some of these new battery technologies were on display at METS, aboard the world’s first hybrid superyacht, the 275-foot Savannah, built by Feadship.
The Yachting Industry and Sustainability
According to Peter Franklin, environmental sustainability coordinator for METSTRADE, the “buzzword” around METSTRADE 2017 was “sustainability.” But, writing for SuperyachtNews, Franklin questioned just what does “sustainability mean to the yachting trade? “Here is one definition that I think particularly suits our industry,” writes Franklin, “Sustainability means taking the long-term view of how our actions effect future generations and making sure we don’t deplete resources or cause pollution at rates faster than the earth is able to renew them.”
With that definition in mind, Franklin suggests that indeed it is the younger generation of boaters that hold the key for a “greener,” and more sustainable future for the entire recreational boating community. “Surely we have to attract more young people into boating and water sports, to either become a professional in our industry, or to enjoy a life-long pastime, in order to harness the energy of youth that will drive changes!”
He went on to say, as evidenced by the popularity of exhibitors such as LR and DNV GL at METSTRADE, that, “For sure we need to be mirroring actions in other consumer industries such as automobile and aerospace manufacturing. This means adopting regulated recycling methods, building for disassembly, developing hybrid energy and propulsion systems, finding ways to reduce our impact on the oceans and the wider environment, and generally encouraging a positive move towards the principles of the Circular Economy.”
A circular economy is an alternative to the traditional “linear” economic model of “make- use–dispose”, in which we keep resources in use for as long as possible, extract the maximum value from them while they are being used, then recover and regenerate products and materials at the end of each service life.
“Sustainable” Information on Superyachts and Yachting!
As 2017 draws to a close, we have had some exciting news for the yachting industry and the yachting community. Keep reading these pages for some of the other amazing superyachts and exciting industry news to look out for as the Holiday season hits full swing, and into the year ahead.
It’s not always easy to stay on top of what’s new in motor yachts. If you would like to benefit from our expertise in these areas, or if you have any questions or comments about this blog post, do not hesitate to contact our Sales Specialists, or call us at 954-900-9988.