Happy New Year! I hope you are healthy and well and looking forward to a year exploring and looking after our Oceans. For many this year marks more than just the turning of time – 2020 was a year we won’t will forget and the start of a New Year symbolises a fresh start and a new beginning.
I’d like to introduce myself and welcome you to this exciting new section in The Islander – the monthly Eco-Yacht Slot.
I’m Hannah and I was a Chief Stewardess for over 9 amazing years – During this time I worked with amazing crew and owners and explored some of the most diverse and beautiful parts of our planet. From the Galapagos to the Amazon we were blessed with marine and land flora and fauna, these experiences left me with a deep love of the environment and a great ability to make beds faster than anyone I know. Fast forward a few years and I live in Mallorca and run Viveco – a Sustainable Living shop online and with a physical shop in the village of Alaro.
I started Viveco a few years after living on land when I began making big changes in my everyday life, swapping to more natural plastic free alternatives to everyday items, reducing the amount I consumed unnecessarily and swapping out reusable alternatives for disposables. I had a lightbulb moment when I realised that all these ‘zero waste’ changes I was making on a personal and household level also had amazing benefits when applied to Yachts – you need to SHOP LESS , STORE LESS and CREATE LESS WASTE. Within the Yacht Crew community there has recently been a huge movement towards reducing plastic consumption onboard and now one of my absolute favourite aspects of my business is combining my 2 passions and helping yachts make lasting changes.
FRESH START FOR 2021
As we go into a new year it is a great time to start to look at where you can make changes onboard. If you are here in the Med the boat has probably been running on skeleton crew, in the yard, or you have been living ashore for refits / maintenance work. It is a great opportunity to stop and assess what you have onboard, have a huge clear out and audit and use up old stock while having the time to look for viable long term alternatives. To start us off here are our top 5 areas you can make easy but impactful changes to your plastic and waste:
- CREW TOILETRIES
- Instead of continually buying (and throwing away) individual bottles of shampoo, conditioner etc look at swapping to 5L bulk bottles in the toiletry cupboard (or store in the bilge) which crew then fill up from each time.
- Keep it simple, eliminate unnecessary toxic chemicals from your cleaning cupboard and keep only what you really need. Think about making simple things yourself or purchasing your most used products (Vinegar, Universal Cleaner etc) in bulk and refilling your bottles onboard.
- CREW MESS
- Still holding onto that pod machine – now is the time to change. Switching to a bean to cup machine not only saves a HUGE amount of unnecessary pod waste but you get a nicer cup of coffee and it will save you money in the long term!
- Swap out flimsy plastic Ziplocs to Silicon Stasher Bags, available in a variety of sizes and shapes – these bags are endlessly useful from freezing smoothies and keep food fresh to storing guest sandwiches and wet bikinis. Freezer, Microwave and Oven Safe! A small stash replaces hundreds of Ziplocs
- Ditch the chemical laden plastic heavy Fabric Softener/ Bounce sheets and Swap to Woollen Dryer Balls. Use an Ecoegg or Laundry Sheets for everyday Items and keep a Bulk Laundry Liquid on hand for stained / smelly items.
Whether you are on a 20m sailing boat or a 90M motor applying some simple changes to mindset and purchasing habits can drastically impact the amount of waste you create.
Over the coming months we will look at
- Some of the current issues surrounding plastic use and waste management
- Challenges and solutions to issues faced by crew and Yachts when trying to implement change onboard
- Finding and sourcing the right products
- Each month we will feature a few of our favourite and simple swaps you can easily make to help you on your eco-journey.
If you have any topics you would like me to look into or have any feedback please get in touch – I’d love to hear from you!