Foul language
Sailing Today|April 2021
It won’t be long before boatyards around the coast are humming with the noise of sanders and the chip-chip-chip of owners removing old flakes of antifouling. Sam Fortescue looks at the latest products
Sam Fortescue

A few years back, there was a question mark hanging over the common British practice of antifouling your own yacht. A failure to stick to best practice on wearing gloves, glasses and masks made the Health and Safety Executive nervous, while the Environment Agency was concerned about the amount of toxic old antifouling paint that was finding its way into marine ecosystems.

There was a concerted push by the British paint industry, as well as the Royal Yachting Association and industry body British Marine to get DIY painters to up their game. They put out a confetti shower of leaflets, posters and guidance to boatowners as part of their ‘Protect, Collect, Dispose’ campaign. And the industry’s Green Blue initiative tried to raise awareness of marine pollution among boaters generally.

Four years on, it is very hard to determine what has changed nationally. Although marinas and boatyards have been urged to install water collection and filtration equipment to ensure that old paint can’t run off and pollute the water, no-one has followed up on this. And in fact, no-one thinks it is their job to do so. “It is ultimately the responsibility of the marinas/ boatowners to follow [up],” according to Emily Bradley of industry body the British Coatings Federation.

Anecdotal evidence suggests that there has been only limited take-up. According to the RYA, “marinas and boatyards with suitably bunded facilities are not that common.” The Green Blue offers a map of the British marinas with some sort of environmental facilities installed (thegreenblue.org.uk), and this currently shows just six marinas can collect contaminated wash-down water. Premier says it is planning to install facilities soon, Boatfolk says three of its six marinas are equipped with ‘interceptors’ and Yacht Havens has equipped more complex collection facilities in its three marinas that have boatyards. With water pollution high on the Government’s agenda ahead and a new Environment Bill expected in March, there must be some concerns within the industry.

Better news is that the majority of boatowners seem to be aware of best practice when it comes to antifouling the boat. A survey by the industry in 2016 found that 97 per cent of boaters wore gloves for antifouling, while 74 per cent wore face masks. And the industry is busy innovating with novel types of antifouling which are free of traditional biocides. Here is a round up of the options, and a look at what is new.

ALL CHANGE?

Now that the UK has left the EU, we were keen to learn how our regulators planned to use their newly returned control. It might surprise you to know, then, that there is literally no change in the paint sector post-Brexit. That’s because the UK has simply copypasted the previous EU Biocidal Products Regulation into British law and put it under the control of the Health & Safety Executive. “This gives an element of reassurance to UK antifoul manufacturers and distributors placing products on shelves, meaning there are no physical changes to formulations at this point in time,” says Geoff Mackrill, director of Teal & Mackrill, which manufacturers the Teamac brand of paints. On the other hand, it duplicates the cost of compliance. “The question is: will the UK market justify spend on all or just some of the costs?” Reading between the lines, British boatowners could see a narrower choice of product available in the future.

Ablative

Continue reading your story on the app

Continue reading your story in the magazine

MORE STORIES FROM SAILING TODAYView All

Spirited performer

Choosing a traditional-looking boat doesn’t mean going low-tech, as Sam Fortescue discovered when he sailed the Spirit Yachts’ new 44E

7 mins read
Sailing Today
April 2021

Foul language

It won’t be long before boatyards around the coast are humming with the noise of sanders and the chip-chip-chip of owners removing old flakes of antifouling. Sam Fortescue looks at the latest products

9 mins read
Sailing Today
April 2021

It ain't over til it's over

An edge-of-your-seat Vendée Globe thriller came down to the final hours, with a last minute drama that shocked millions

10 mins read
Sailing Today
April 2021

Fitness from home

There has never been a better time to train from home than now. Even in normal times, just think how much time you would save. Jon Emmett provides some pointers on best technique

6 mins read
Sailing Today
April 2021

Can they be beaten?

Emirates Team New Zealand is lying in wait in the America’s Cup, due to take place from 6-15 March. We take a closer look at the team to beat

6 mins read
Sailing Today
April 2021

Jess Lloyd-Mostyn

Rats and sailors share an uneasy relationship going back almost to the beginning of time. When Jess and crew received an unwelcome visitor, drastic action was required

3 mins read
Sailing Today
April 2021

Tea on the Nile

When you’re living in the middle of the Sahara desert and the government is a military dictatorship it can be a challenge to find fun things to do

7 mins read
Sailing Today
April 2021

Fjord Focus

Nick Huxford narrates a voyage that took him from Southampton to Norway’s Lofoten Islands

6 mins read
Sailing Today
April 2021

Tom Cunliffe

Night watch on a long offshore passage is a real test of will and concentration but a memorable night encounter underlined the need for vigilance to Tom

6 mins read
Sailing Today
April 2021

Andi Robertson

As the Vendée Globe wraps up, skippers are alreadly looking to the future and the next race. So what are the prospects for the class of 2021

4 mins read
Sailing Today
April 2021
RELATED STORIES

UBER TO RECRUIT 20,000 UK DRIVERS ON POST-LOCKDOWN DEMAND

Uber plans to recruit 20,000 more drivers in the United Kingdom to help fill swelling demand for rides as the country’s coronavirus lockdown restrictions ease.

1 min read
Techlife News
Techlife News #496

Secret Pentagon Warning

U.S. BRACES FOR WORLD WAR 3!

4 mins read
National Enquirer
May 03, 2021

‘BRITCOIN' DIGITAL CURRENCY BEING CONSIDERED BY UK

British authorities are exploring the possibility of creating a new digital currency that Treasury chief Rishi Sunak touted as “Britcoin.”

2 mins read
AppleMagazine
AppleMagazine #495 *Special Edition

CHEF JUDY JOO: We'll Be Back STRONGER THAN EVER

THE CELEBRITY COOK AND RESTAURATEUR TALKS ABOUT THE IMPACT OF COVID ON THE HOSPITALITY INDUSTRY— AND WHAT DINING OUT WILL LOOK LIKE IN THE FUTURE.

4 mins read
Star
May 03, 2021

The U.K. Wants to Clean Up Space

The amount of debris in orbit is an increasing danger—and a potential market opportunity

4 mins read
Bloomberg Businessweek
April 19, 2021

Bumper UK race fleets forecast

A bumper racing season in the UK is being predicted this summer as the easing of restrictions to social gatherings meets pent up appetite for competitive events. The largest is likely to be the Round the Island Race, which takes place on 3 July, followed by Cowes Week and the Rolex Fastnet Race in August, both of which could see boosted fleet numbers.

1 min read
Yachting World
May 2021

EPIC GAMES COMPLAINS ABOUT APPLE TO UK COMPETITION WATCHDOG

Epic Games submitted a complaint this week about Apple’s alleged “monopolistic practices” to the U.K. competition watchdog, which is investigating the iPhone maker over concerns it has a dominant position in app distribution.

2 mins read
AppleMagazine
AppleMagazine #492

There Must Have Been Something in the Water

If The Beatles never happened, if the British invasion never occurred, then music fans around the world would more than likely never have been exposed to some of the finest white blues singers that the U.K. produced between 1964 and 1970.

8 mins read
GOLDMINE
April 2021

GET SMART

AI’S ROLE IN THE COVID VACCINATION PROCESS

3 mins read
The BOSS Magazine
February 2021

UBER TO GIVE UK DRIVERS MINIMUM WAGE, PENSION, HOLIDAY PAY

Uber is giving its U.K. drivers the minimum wage, pensions and holiday pay, following a recent court ruling that said they should be classified as workers and entitled to such benefits.

2 mins read
AppleMagazine
AppleMagazine #490