From the European Confederation of Nautical Industries: ECNI - National federations committed to the European scene
Today, the European Confederation of Nautical Industries – ECNI released the study commissioned to an international team of experts on the environmental impact of nautical activities. The aim for this study is twofold: establishing and understanding the true impact of recreational activities on the marine
and aquatic environment
, and taking full account of other pollution sources and pressures.
Professionals in the recreational marine
industry have already signed up to initiatives aimed at encouraging sustainable development in recreational boating
. They actively promote innovative solutions in order to provide recreational boaters with new, more environmental-friendly technologies. They are also engaged in programmes designed to raise awareness among recreational boating
enthusiasts, in an attempt to limit even further their impact on the environment
Initially, the study intended to assess worldwide the environmental impact of recreational activities taking place in marine areas, rivers and lakes. However, the fragmentation of existing studies and data available resulted in reducing the scope
of the study to the situation in Europe
, with some highlights from other countries on certain aspects. The team of international experts who contributed to the study did not carry out new studies but used existing ones in an effort to compile in one study the sectoral research
efforts carried out so far.
The future of the recreational marine sector is dependent on the quality of the marine environment. In addition, this study demonstrates that recreational marine activities are only a minor source of marine pollution. The majority of people, who practise nautical activities, be they boaters, windsurfers or divers have a deep affinity with their environment and a respect for nature. For these people, enjoying a well-preserved natural environment is vitally important. If the sustainability and long-term future of nautical activities is to be guaranteed, the environment must continue to be protected from pollution and pressures on its ecosystem.
Since recreational boating is highly visible to the public, particularly during the summer period, it is often seen as exerting a significant pressure on the environment and contributing to environmental problems. Yet the main sources of pollution tend to go unnoticed. In this study, ECNI’s team of independent experts has analysed the impact of nautical activities on the environment and has also reviewed the contribution of other sources. Furthermore, the recreational marine industry will use the outcomes of this study to adapt its strategy towards sustainability.