They’re a potent symbol of excess: bloated floating mansions that stir up the calm waters of the ocean, pump out CO2 and suck up fuel like there’s no tomorrow. But those poor beleaguered billionaires who seek refuge on the high seas aren’t about to give up their luxury yachts.
Still, in an increasingly eco-conscious world, many yacht owners are realizing that they’d better shape up or ship out – at least, on the surface. Enter Ecoyachts, a web-based consulting and service company for yachters who want to go green”¦ish.
Ecoyachts posits itself as a one-stop shop for eco-friendly yachting supplies, services and information.
“Whether you are building, own, operate or manage a luxury sailing or power yacht, Ecoyachts will help you discover innovative products and services to compliment your yachting experience and at the same time contribute to improving our environment,” reads the site’s mission statement.
But is it good enough for luxury yacht owners to load up on recycling bins, homeopathic first aid kits, filtered tap water and organic upholstery? What about sustainable wood decks, waste water recycling systems and non-toxic finishes? Do all of these things add up to a real step forward, or are they just lipstick on a pig? After all, the oceans are in bad enough shape without the harm that gigantic pleasure crafts can do.
Sure, going green doesn’t have to mean giving up all the pleasures of life, and Ecoyachts’ aim to help the industry reduce its environmental impact is a noble one. But if yachters really wanted to go green, they’d at least downsize – or switch to sailboats, which do everything that fancy hybrid/solar/biodiesel yachts can do, but with the original renewable resource: wind.