Over the last two or three years, it seems that the idea of conserving our planet and our oceans has come to the forefront of our minds. Governments and official bodies have also taken a pro-active approach in creating solutions that look after wildlife and no better example exists, than the measures being taken to protect marine life in our oceans and rivers.
Recently, the UK Government added to its Marine Conservation Zone numbers and with good reason. We have seen a decline in certain breeds of birds and fish and it seems as a planet, we need to do more to protect those species for the future.
As a result of all the impact of the past, there have been more demands put on boat owners and marinas to start thinking about the issue of chemicals being added to eco-systems, resulting in new innovations being sought to repair the damage.
One of the biggest areas of innovation is in the world of antifoul. This very old solution has been used for countless years to prevent marine organisms from adhering to hulls. In fact, during the growth era of shipping, all kinds of solutions were found to protect hulls, including copper plates (as seen on boats like the Cutt Sark). However, with no counteractive activities to balance out the chemicals, the damage has been done.
For those who may not realise, fouling is an acute problem for boats and ships of all sizes and essentially can have impact in numerous areas including; speed, maneuverability and it can actually increase fuel consumption by as much as 30 percent. Therefore, it is easy to understand why there’s a need to protect the hull or boat bottom. However, does this demand mean we cannot find better alternatives that will solve the problem, while protecting wildlife?
There are actually a few different options for newer foul release systems – of which AquaMarine belongs to. Essentially, these repel slime and barnacles rather than kill them.
The one fundamental difference of course, is that a foul release like AquaMarine does not need to be removed and re-applied every year. Some foul release products actually require removal – which is possibly counterproductive in the long run. Indeed, some of our studies have offered up to 5 years protection. This has resulted in boat owners needing only to jet wash any slime that has attached off.
Whatever you do to protect your boat, it’s important to try and protect marine life for future generations. Remember, while you can keep barnacles under control with anti-foul, other marine life may end up affected by your choice.
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