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  • Patrick Hutchings

Small Changes, Big impact



Three weeks into the New Year and I am sure all of us are at the height of practicing our new years' resolutions with great determination, hoping to carry them on the rest of 2022. Without a doubt, I am a sucker for setting a resolution of not eating certain food and drastically failing on day 3 of January but one resolution that I drive hard to keep both in 2021 and continue in 2022 is staying sustainable in not only my everyday life but in my practices during sailing.


Sail4Sustaiability is a driving force behind this campaign and I am truly passionate about finding ways to reduce plastic pollution in our oceans. There is no sugar coating the current state of our environment, being in the centre of an unprecedented crisis with harrowing facts and statics predicting the detrimental impacts our behaviour will have on the ocean. The campaign focuses in on changing industry and introducing ocean education into schools but small changes in our everyday life are easy starting points for creating a sustainable future.

Small changes, Big impact

Over the last year, I have thrown out (not literally) everyday items which I used without questioning the impact it was having on the environment. Below, I am going to list a few items that everyone can change up, listing some of my favourite sustainable products and brands.

Plastic water bottles

Switching to reusable plastic bottles is a perfect way to limit the plastic waste we are creating, especially if you are like me and constantly carry water around with you. There is a temptation in purchasing water bottles, being a convenient and quick fix when out and about. However, now with increased awareness around this issue, there are locations to fill up reusable water bottles or options to purchase plastic-free alternatives in supermarkets.

Here are some of my favourites:


  • Yeti & Chilli Bottles https://uk.yeti.com https://www.chillys.com

Both these brands are my go-to when it comes to reusable water bottles. Yeti provides quality in their bottles, being hardy even when sailing in extreme conditions.


  • Just Water https://justwater.com

Just water is a water bottle company that produces 100% recyclable water cartons as a plastic-free alternative, it is also made from 82% renewable resources.

  • Refil App https://www.refill.org.uk

Refill is an app that works by enabling people to connect with locations near them where they can drink and eat with less waste, such as free drinking water, warm drinks without the pointless plastic tops and zero-waste shopping options. The app is free to download and easy to use!




Sun Cream

Sun cream goes hand in hand with sailing as we are so exposed to the elements when we are out on the water, even in the winter months it's still possible to get burnt! Up until a few years ago, I didn’t realise how bad chemical-based suncream is for the ocean. Chemical-based sunscreens are easily absorbed into the skin and don’t leave a white residue, but they are also easily absorbed by much smaller and more vulnerable sea life, from coral reefs to mussels, fish and dolphins. Since learning about the damage it can do, I have switched to zinc-based sun cream that is much better for the environment.

  • Suntribe Zinc Sunstick https://suntribesunscreen.com/product/suntribe-natural-zinc-sun-stick-spf30/

I have been using Suntribe recently as it is specifically made for water sports and is also completely plastic-free as well as being completely biodegradable and also protects against UVA/UVB.



Cleaning products

Despite all the fun that comes with sailing, we do sometimes have to do the rubbish jobs, like cleaning and maintaining the upkeep of the boat. Some of the most popular cleaning brands could be harming the environment in countless ways. From the packaging to the chemicals that are put in, all causing a detrimental impact on the environment. I found Eco Works in a local chandlery, they use a blend of bacteria and enzymes to create a natural and eco-friendly product. They also do a refill service so you can keep using the same bottle and save plastic which is really cool.


Eco works

https://www.ecoworksmarine.com/collections/exterior-cleaning



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