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PONANT lives and celebrates World Environment Day

June 3, 2021 Cruise News No Comments
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On June 5, as the world focusses on global environmental responsibilities and a sustainable future, PONANT has reiterated its long standing commitment to responsible tourism and the investment the group has put into providing environmentally sustainable actions for over 30 years.

Sarina Bratton, PONANT Chairman, Asia Pacific said, “Since PONANT’s very inception by passionate sailors with an innate connection to the sea, the company made determinations, often at significant cost, to implement, review and improve all the environmental aspects of its operations – ashore and afloat”, adding,  “Not merely jumping on the environmental expediency bandwagon at the last moment, sustainability forms an integral part of PONANT’s statutes.”

She added, “Pleasingly, we appreciate that we are not alone in these important endeavours, with a number of other responsible cruise industry operators also paying tangible attention to the crucial subject of sustainable tourism. It is, after all, our collective future.”

For PONANT the quest is never ending, with as a public reference point, the company has released an important overview document entitled ‘Our environmental commitments from A to Z’, outlining accomplishments to date and current and future objectives, with Sarina saying, “I am proud of what PONANT has accomplished, and especially so for the company to document it for all to see at this time as, globally, we reset the way forward based on decisions made today,”.

To discover and explore PONANT’s A-Z of environmental action and commitments, providing detail and context to the breadth of PONANT’s commitments – environmental, technological, operational and humanitarian – click here to access ‘Our environmental commitments from A to Z’.

These documents provide summary information exampling the diverse, yet inter-connected actions completed, in process or forthcoming, including:

Corporate milestones.

  1. PONANT’s governance includes a Sustainable Development and CSR department monitored monthly by a steering committee which supervises all actions.
  1. On board, currently 60% of waste is recycled with an objective to raise this to 85%. The global rate is 20%.
  1. PONANT treats all wastewater – biologically treated and filtered without chemical additives. The residue is 100% tracked, disposed via certified responsible waste disposal.
  1. The implementation of shorter supply chains where possible; monitoring the origin of meats supplied and paying attention to animal welfare.
  1. Better than carbon neutral: since September 2019 PONANT has implemented 150% offset of carbon emissions.
  1. NGO NABU has identified PONANT as the cruise company with the world’s cleanest fleet in terms of airborne emissions.
  1. Executive Member of AECO – the Association of Arctic Expedition Cruise Operators aimed at responsible, environmentally friendly and safe tourism in the Arctic.
  1. Executive Member of IAATO – the International Association of Antarctic Tour Operators – which advocates and promotes safe and environmentally responsible travel in the Antarctic including restrictions on the numbers of guests ashore at one time, proximity to wildlife, briefings for guests, crew and expedition personnel.

The PONANT Fleet at the core of sustainability development.

  1. Investing over €1 billion, PONANT has the youngest fleet of small luxury expedition ships in the world. 10 small capacity ships fitted with electric propulsion powered by generators. Investing in and operating a modern fleet brings environmental benefits:
  1. All ships have obtained Comfort Class 1 certification reflecting low noise and vibration levels – good for guests and marine life alike.
  1. The PONANT EXPLORERS fleet of six vessels achieved a 75% reduction in their nitrogen oxide emissions by having catalytic convertors operating 24 hours a day. An industry exclusive.
  1. Fleet-wide, PONANT is the first cruise company to have ceased using heavy fuel oil (HFO) moving to 100% lower emission high grade Low Sulphur Marine Gas Oil.
  1. All the ships in the PONANT fleet carry the highly regarded Bureau Veritas CLEANSHIP certification label.
  1. Each ship has a designated Environmental Officer on board responsible for briefings for guests, crew and expedition personnel.

PONANT supports scientific research.

  1. With the introduction of the 11th ship later this year, Le Commandant Charcot, the world’s first luxury polar explorer hybrid electric powered by LNG, there will be dedicated laboratory space set aside for use by the scientific community invited onboard to further their polar observation, research and analysis.
  1. Rare research opportunities afforded in the polar extremes, partly thanks to the ship’s PC2 hull rating, unique for a luxury expedition ship, which will allow it to reach as far as the geographic North Pole in the Arctic and push further south, far beyond the reach of existing expedition ships, when in Antarctica.

The PONANT Foundation, over 20 commitments completed or underway.

  1. Aldabra Lagoon clean-up in the Seychelles in collaboration with Oxford University.
  1. Bijagos schoolhouse construction project. Construction has commenced to build the new ‘Mantchacadé’ school on Caravela island in Anipoc, along with housing for the teachers which will provide the only sanitation facilities in the village.
  1. Amazon reforestation in Pará, northern Brazil.
  1. Wind power production in Maharashtra, western India and Pholtovoltaic power generation in several Indian regions.
  1. Annual donations to the Upernavik FabLab to assist in maintaining local craft traditions.
  1. In February 2020, the PONANT Foundation, in collaboration with Conservation International, a research team of six scientists spent three weeks on board L’Austral in Antarctica. Their mission to gather and analyse information on the distribution, genetics and acoustics of whales resulted in 60 whales identified and 16 hours of underwater recordings registered.

Visit au.ponant.com/foundation for more information.

A report by John Alwyn-Jones, Cruise Editor.

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