YEARS:

2018, 2017

Vestas 11th Hour Racing

11th Hour Racing Partnership

Joining forces for the 2017-2018 Volvo Ocean Race, Vestas and 11th Hour Racing are aiming for exemplary results – both on the water and for the planet. The team has set the goal to be the most environmentally sustainable team to have ever competed in the Volvo Ocean Race.

A selection of initiatives through this partnership, aligned with the team’s robust sustainability strategy, include:

  • Following an internal Environmental Purchasing Plan for food and team operations that puts environmentally conscious and local foods at the forefront, along with materials used for base operations.
  • Reducing carbon footprint through a range of initiatives including biking, public transit and ‘Meatless Mondays’. All travel will be tracked to calculate the team’s carbon footprint as they travel the globe – and they will work to offset their footprint.
  • Responsibly managing waste, water (consumption and quality) and energy (efficiency and renewable). The team will also be monitoring impact and reporting progress against sustainability targets.

Background

Charlie Enright and Mark Towill came away from the 2014-15 Volvo Ocean Race with an important message and an inspired mission:

“As sailors, we have a direct connection to the ocean. It’s our office, our playground, and our livelihood; ultimately we are responsible for taking care of it. Circumnavigating the globe opened our eyes to the tremendous amount of pollution that exists and has motivated us to do something about it.”

Under their leadership, Vestas 11th Hour Racing sets out to participate in the most grueling race on earth, sailing to the most remote places on earth, while bearing witness to global change and sharing the import message of protecting and restoring our oceans.

The team is intent on winning on and off the water; promoting renewable energy and ocean health, with a particular focus on reducing marine debris, and implementing a comprehensive sustainability plan for the sailing team.

Impact

  • The team tracked and offset their carbon footprint of 1,218 tonnes CO2e with a blue carbon project, which restores seagrass and salt marshes.
  • The team achieved a 74% landfill diversion rate of the waste produced through careful recycling and composting.
  • 92% of housing was within walking, biking, or public transportation distance, reducing the team’s travel-related carbon footprint while at stopovers.
  • By participating in Meatless Mondays, and not eating meat one day a week, the team reduced their carbon footprint by 2.72 tons, along with preventing the use of 671,000 liters of water.
  • 15,987 single-use 500ml water bottles were not used thanks to Bluewater water filtration units that supplied the team, sponsors and guests’ water needs.
  • More than 99,300 people visited the team’s Exploration Zone learning about renewable energy solutions, ocean research, innovations to prevent microfiber pollution, and the principles of a circular economy.
  • $120,000 in grants were awarded to environmental organizations to support local innovations in sustainability and ocean health.
  • 314,000,000 media impression were generated specific to the team’s sustainability efforts, with more than 550,000 views of videos discussing ocean health and environmental issues.
To view the full Vestas 11th Hour Racing Sustainability Report, click here.

Leading Sustainability

The Vestas 11th Hour Racing team’s mission to be the most environmentally sustainable team to have ever competed in the Volvo Ocean Race. The infographic and images below are a snapshot of the team’s efforts.

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Gallery

Over 99,000 people

visited the team’s Exploration Zone – a dedicated educational space with interactive displays focused on wind and water. Visitors explored the power of wind as a renewable energy source, learned about researching the deep seas, stopping micro-fibers pollution, and the concepts of creating a circular economy.

Gallery

Leading Sustainability – Vestas 11th Hour Racing Summary

Mark Towill on protecting the ocean

Charlie Enright shares how sustainability impacted his family

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