Owners of Amels and Damen Yachting yachts are among luxury yachting’s most engaged visionaries in ocean sustainability. While enjoying beautiful coastlines and islands, they are driving growing awareness of ocean health and coastal communities. Many of their crews are also contributing to the Dutch yacht builder’s #Loveouroceans campaign, which recognizes positive efforts and innovations to improve sustainable luxury yachting.
From its head office in the south of the Netherlands, Amels and Damen Yachting builds and outfits superyachts at its Dutch and other European yards. Damen Yachting is the yacht building division of the Damen Shipyards Group, the world’s leading specialist shipbuilder with 12,000 employees and 35 shipyards around the globe. As well as the master yacht builder behind more than 100 Amels superyachts, SeaXplorer expedition yachts, Yacht Support vessels and major yacht refits, Damen builds everything from navy ships to tug boats. Rose Damen, a third generation family shareholder, is Managing Director of the Yachting division.
The Damen family is committed to empowering their clients to achieve their sustainability goals through fundamental innovation at Damen’s inhouse Research Laboratory. Damen has unparalleled experience with ocean research equipment, ocean-going yachts that increase safety at sea while reducing the impact on the environment, and emission reducing innovation. In 2018, the yard delivered the world’s first yacht with Tier III emissions standards – the result of a 3-year project together with its subcontractor partners.
Why Damen Yachting supports Water Revolution
“It’s inspiring to see the energy that our clients bring to creating healthier oceans and coastal communities through their philanthropy and advocacy. But it’s also increasingly hands on. We see owners and their families starting to make ocean research and discovery part of their yachting experience. That’s where we as yacht builders can help – with our luxury yachts or expedition vessels.
The Damen group has a lot of knowhow, from polar research ships, survey vessels and such. Commercial shipbuilding is also quite a bit ahead of yachting when it comes to technical innovations, fully electric Damen ferries and work boats for example. We’re lucky that we can share that expertise with our clients.”
— Rose Damen, Managing Director
Feadship fundamentally believes that the future has to be different. Traditional luxury standards such as quality, craftsmanship and rarity with a price premium, while important, are just part of the package.
Now, clients want to see corporate social responsibility and sustainability as part of a shipyard’s overall brand. Feadship, alongside developing shipbuilding technology, has spent considerable sums on their own facilities so that the environmental footprint of both yacht and shipyard are considered as one. There is a fine line as to whether a shipyard should develop future technology or a client should challenge them to do so. Feadship has made a commitment that the industry needs to match: to deliver emission-free yachts by 2025 and an emission-free construction process by 2030.
Part of this is building yachts capable of using alternative fuels – even a combination of fuels. Hydrogen and diesel is a possibility. Tier III regulations have made the industry progress with cleaner fuels, including bio-diesel that is not even a fossil fuel. Availability is one issue to be overcome, but as strategic industry we can drive this development. SCR is an acronym for technology that almost reduces NOx exhaust toxins to zero. The only issue has been the need for a large tank to hold the neutralising liquid. Feadship has developed Oxywash© to solve all of these problems.
Clients, designers and shipyards have to work together to refocus the concept of the private yacht. For example, to integrate electric, hydrogen, synthetic, solar and wind. Enlightened clients drive progress.
Why Feadship supports Water Revolution
“Sustainability is a focal point within Feadship, integrated within the yards, the design process, the final product and our own behaviour. We feel responsible for keeping the oceans clean as experience of sailing on a superyacht goes hand in hand with preserving nature and water quality. Sustainability extends far beyond our own organisation. Feadship is one of the founders of Water Revolution Foundation, a frontrunner in encouraging all parties involved in the construction and use of large yachts to take responsibility for their impact on the environment. This collective aims to develop a global superyacht agenda for sustainability that shares best practices from the industry and stays ahead of legislation by combining innovative strength and coordinating collective efforts.”