Ocean Cleanup in Croatia

May 8, 2018

A vision for change

On Earth Day, we teamed up with Sea Going Green to carry out our annual seabed cleanup across two locations in Croatia; Marina Palmižana and Soline Bay. Together with the efforts of the ACI marina Palmižana and the Association of Veterans HRM and RK Nautilus, who provided 15 volunteer ex-military divers, we were able to pull over 1000kgs of waste from the Adriatic.

It was truly eye-opening.

Photography by: Sam McAllister 

Here's the story of 2 boats and 15 divers cleaning up the Adriatic.

The cleanup day:

Our team met at the marina in Split at 8:30 AM on a sunny spring morning. There was a shared sense of energy, enthusiasm, and excitement for the day ahead. We traveled by boat to Marina Palmižana where the weather was warm and the sea deceptively clear.

Photography by: Sam McAllister 

The veterans met us there and immediately began prepping their equipment, dividing themselves into two teams. They loaded the boats and set off to their designated cleanup areas, eager to get into the water.

Photography by: Sam McAllister 

On arriving at the two sites, the divers grabbed their scuba gear and went to see what debris they could find deep below. They spent approximately 1hr30 scanning the seabed. It was shocking to see just how much rubbish there was hidden below the Adriatic's beautiful blue surface.

Photography by: Sam McAllister 

A wallet, 3 iPhones, a sports bag, 2 garden chairs and plastic bottles and cans were amongst the piles of garbage which soon filled the boats. By the end of the dive, one metric tonne was gathered. While it was disheartening to see the damage done to our precious oceans, we channeled that energy in a positive direction and returned to the boats happy to be making a difference, even if it was a small one.

Photography by: Sam McAllister 

Fins off, we then gathered all of the rubbish from both sites and transported it to a designated area for marine waste, where it was then due to be collected by a responsible local waste disposal unit.

Photography by: Sam McAllister 

We then made our way back to base for a hearty lunch, the perfect way to recharge and refuel in the sun. It was great to see how energized everyone was once they returned to shore and the feel-good high of having helped allow the sites return to their natural state was infectious. After an hour or two of reflecting and laughing and eating, we embarked back on the boats and sailed back to Split.

Photography by: Sam McAllister 

It was a great day and although we are aware that the damage to our oceans isn’t going to change dramatically overnight, the fact we were part of a bigger global initiative taking action on Earth Day is what left us smiling.

Photography by: Sam McAllister 

Special thanks

To all of the people who helped make this day extra special. We can’t wait to work with you all again next year doing our bit for the big blue 💙

Be inspired

At The Yacht Week, it is very important that we are able to make a difference by sparking positive change no matter where the wind and the waves take us. We sail to some of the world’s most beautiful locations and we aim to keep them that way.

We encourage you to be as conscious of your actions this summer as possible. Small changes make a big difference. If you see plastic, pick it up.

Life as we know it depends on our oceans. Love them, respect them, and protect them 🌊