There is a running joke here at SuperyachtNews HQ: anything to do with plastic or ocean pollution, conservation or philanthropic efforts, I want to write about it.  It will come as no surprise, then, that the sessions I am most looking forward to at The Superyacht Forum are focused on the role superyachts - and the wider industry - in preserving our oceans.  We have such an interesting range of sessions that will discuss how the superyacht market can work with ocean advocates to ensure that the environment our industry depends on is protected for future generations.

This subject matter goes hand in hand with a new feature for this year at the event: film screenings. Two hard-hitting documentaries will be shown, outlining two devastating problems that exist in our oceans: plastic pollution and coral reef destruction. ‘Chasing Coral’ and ‘A Plastic Ocean’ will be screened on Tuesday and Wednesday respectively, with a representative from each project on hand to introduce the film and answer any questions the audience may have.

Y.CO co-founder and CEO Charlie Birkett will present their ‘Clearwater’ campaign, with the help of ocean conservationist Emily Penn. Y.CO launched this campaign earlier this year, an initiative that hopes combat the use of plastics on board the yachts they manage.  Following this, there will be a panel discussion, ‘Taking ownership of our oceans’ where Birkett and Penn will join David Jones, The Plastic Ocean Foundation; Richard Vevers, The Ocean Agency and Vienna Eleuteri, chief sustainability officer for SYBass. This panel will look at the current collaborations that are in place, but also how the superyacht market can better engage with those involved in protecting the planet. It is beneficial for these two ‘sides’ to see each other in a positive light, and develop a mutually symbiotic relationship; where superyachts are used as a platform to enhance the scope of understanding of our oceans, and activists’ intentions are seen as a way to safeguard the oceans that owners and clients enjoy. 

The event programme and its contents reflect the distinct sections found within The Superyacht Report; business, technology, operations, fleet, design, owner and buyer. In this way, the audience can clearly decipher which elements of the programme are most appropriate for them, and their interests. There are a number of ‘owner’ focused panel discussions throughout the event. Erwin Bamps, CEO of Gulf Craft and Laurent Debart, YPI, will join Martin Redmayne, The Superyacht Group to explore the future of ownership models;  the term ‘fractional ownership’ is often bandied around with a hint of negativity, but is this the way forward for our industry to survive? Taking a different perspective on chartering, Matty Zadnikar, co-founder of Seanet, will lead a discussion on the changing face of the charter market.

The full programme for The Superyacht Forum is available to view here and you can register to attend by clicking on this link. The event will be held from 13 - 16 November in Amsterdam.

In celebration of The Superyacht Group’s 25th Anniversary, we have launched our ‘Ocean Chari-Tee’ campaign, where the funds raised go towards ocean charities. Buy a t-shirt and support our cause!

Photo courtesy of The Ocean Agency, copyright: Christophe Bailhache