Our main environmental aim, as a cruising company, is to make sure that we leave no trace of our activities on the pristine natural environments that we visit. In fact, we do better than that – if we find any waste, especially plastic on our shore trips we try to take as much of it on board as possible and then dispose of it properly ashore.
Our crews are hand-picked and a commitment to environmental sustainability is a major criterion in joining our team. In fact, often they come up with new ideas on how we can further reduce our impact, for example our multi-use water bottles were a great idea in 2019 and much appreciated by guests. There is a specialist Wildlife Expert onboard every one of our cruises, with a university degree in subjects such as Biology, Ecology, and Geology and many have close ties with the Hebridean Whale and Dolphin Trust (HWDT). These vital crew members know the marine habitats of the Hebrides, where to find wildlife and identify species for our guests. They also accompany our guests onshore trips and are just as informative about nature on land. There is no doubt that our guests love the sociable and informal way they gain wildlife knowledge which then fires their own passion for protecting the environment. Guests also help with cetacean sightings that are reported to HWDT through their Whale App, providing statistical information for their vital work.
We have noticed that our guests are also very interested in protecting the environment and are happy to contribute suggestions and receive information. So we have provided a charter for responsible and sustainable tourism which outlines how they can support the environment while visiting the area as well as our own commitments. View our Charter for responsible and sustainable tourism
Hebrides Cruises are delighted to announce our long standing Guide, Lynsey Bland is the 'Green Initiative Crew member'. Lynsey is very excited about this role, monitoring our green polices and suggest ways in which we can improve to minimise our environmental impact.
We further support the environment and our local community by buying our food supplies locally. We are very fortunate to have a wide variety of wonderful produce available to our Chefs. View our List of local food suppliers
Monitoring our carbon footprint is a very important factor in helping to understand the impact of our behaviour on global warming. Below is a list of policies we have implemented aboard to limit our carbon footprint:
-Our chefs buy local and seasonal produce. They plan, budget and buy accordingly to avoid waste.
-We try to avoid buying products with excessive plastic packaging.
-Linen and towels are only changed if requested and we encourage guests to take short showers.
-We supply guests with a Hebrides Cruises refillable water bottle.
-We encourage guests to use public transport wherever possible.
-Guests are given information on electric charging points in the surrounding area as part of their joining instructions.
-All guests and crew use the designated recyclable bins provided.
-Solar panels, solar lighting and LEDS are fitted aboard our vessels.
-Our marketing is predominantly online based and with a very large percentage of repeat bookings it allows for minimal paper waste.
-At the end of every season we 'Plant a Tree' for every guest who has taken a cruise with us.
-We suggest guests look for the Green Tourism badge when booking local attractions and accommodation.
-Our Skippers are instructed to run our engines at 65% of their maximum power capacity. We also keep a fuel log aboard each vessel to monitor our fuel use, our aim is for a fuel consumption of 150 litres per person per cruise.
-We lift our tenders out of the water, when not in use, to minimise the impact on fuel and wildlife.