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2021 November December Marina World

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SMART MARINAS The Yacht Club de Monaco and its marina was the perfect venue for the inaugural Monaco Smart & Sustainable Marina meeting, which was attended by around 250 people. Photo: Ferretti Group Catalyst for innovation Monaco Smart & Sustainable Marina, an ambitious one-day, industry-first event aimed at putting the spotlight on sustainable solutions and rewarding and encouraging innovation, was held on 20th September 2021. It was organised by M3 (Monaco Marina Management) and hosted by Yacht Club de Monaco. With demographic forecasts estimating that over 75% of the world’s population will be living in coastal regions by 2035, and given the yachting sector is expanding swiftly around the world with new destinations and marinas coming on stream, Monaco Smart & Sustainable Marina presented a unique exchange platform to put forward tangible solutions to build better marinas. The day culminated with the presentation of Innovation Awards to start-up companies that had been evaluated by an expert panel of judges. Around 250 people (in-person and online), who represented the sector’s most important players (owners, shipyards, start-ups, industrialists and investors) gathered to discuss a global, collective response to climate challenges and encourage responsible innovation. Among those attending was HSH Prince Albert II, president of Yacht Club de Monaco, HRH Princess Haïfa Al-Saud, Deputy Minister of Tourism, and HRH Princess Sarah Al-Saud, director of maritime development at the Academy of Science, Technology and Maritime Transport in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, and first female captain of the Maritime Cooperation Council in the Gulf countries. The meeting was supported by the Prince Albert II of Monaco Foundation and the government’s digital transformation programme, Extended Monaco, alongside Credit Suisse (which has established itself as the yachting bank), Bombardier, SBM Offshore, Teledyne, Xerjoff, NGE Connect and Yacht Club de Monaco. Promoting innovation “The global impacts of climate change are expected to continue increasing in frequency and severity and will be irreversible for centuries, even millennia, and are undeniably linked to human activity,” said Marisa Drew, chief sustainability officer and global head sustainability strategy, advisory and finance at Credit Suisse. The financial sector has a role to play, particularly in the blue economy. Investing in sustainable solutions can and should be used as leverage for inspiring strategies for new businesses. The emergency is now, it is time to act - and in a thoughtful manner as evidenced by new resorts along the Red Sea region “inspired by nature to develop a conceptual resort that will leave the coastline intact,” explained Nicholas King, who is in charge of the Red Sea Development project in Saudi Arabia. Linos Voskarides from the EC’s Directorate General Maritime Affairs and Fisheries confirmed that the European Commission continues to support development projects promoting sustainable maritime ecosystems. Owners put environment first Yacht owners have got the measure of the problem. While Richard Attias and Murat Vargi evoked the need for marinas to be pleasant places to live, Georges Cohen emphasised that before that happens it is vital some key aspects be addressed. Appropriate electrification, as in Monaco, use of clean fuel so as to no longer rely Marisa Drew from Credit Suisse stressed that the financial sector has a role to play, particularly in the blue economy, in leading the investment in sustainable solutions. Lawrence Wang Dafu of Visun Group, China, explained that use of green energy should be a priority and must be combined with a much better use of resources. Nicholas King, in charge of the Red Sea Development project in Saudi Arabia, stressed that developments must be inspired by nature so as to leave coastline intact. 52 – November/December 2021

SMART MARINAS When designing and building the Yacht Club de Monaco – a new icon – environmental considerations were paramount. Photo: ycm@mcclic on diesel generators, application of existing regulations, managing grey and black water, and drinking water, recycling, etc – all are challenges that many marinas need to address, as highlighted by Marco Casiraghi. Both speakers insisted those who do not respect the environment must pay the price for poor conduct. Superyacht captain, Matthias du Verle, also urged that the changes should involve the concept and design of yachts. The priority of sustainability Concerns about sustainability dominated most of the discussions between marina operators and developers. Beyond talking about practical solutions, often existing but not necessarily implemented, the international panel (Bahamas, China, Saudi Arabia, Monaco) insisted on the need to exceed the regulations. While everyone admitted sustainable developments involved a big investment, they were seeing the value and not just from an ecological point of view. “Investment in protecting the Attendees included (l to r): Mr Jean Castellini, Minister of Finance and Economy of Monaco; HRH Princess Haïfa Al-Saud, Deputy Minister of Tourism; HSH Prince Albert II, President Yacht Club de Monaco and José Marco Casellini, CEO at M3, the event organiser. environment should be included in companies’ accounts and incorporated into the overall value of any enterprise, which is not the case,” believes Brendan Jack, director sustainable development at AMAALA (Saudi Arabia). Lawrence Wang Dafu, president of the Visun Group in China echoed what had been said before explaining that use of green energy should be a priority combined with a much better use of resources. There are many opportunities for smart redevelopment of existing marinas with new building materials, such as “smart concrete” which helps regenerate marine habitats, noted Christian Denhard, Safe Harbor Rybovich superyachts marina director. There is evidence that solutions could be put into practice now, including those relying on innovations by the start-ups present, on the one condition of really wanting to do so. Maintenance and refit providers from the shipyards admitted multiple challenges, partly because they are starting from scratch and because, as service providers, they face a complex “dilemma”: big investment in sustainability has an impact on financial returns, as it is not yet possible to turn these investments into higher costs. Although customers are more understanding now, all three believe the road ahead is still long and winding, and say educating crews, workers and even yacht owners is the key. Smart marinas mirror smart cities “Most solutions developed for cities can be applied to marinas,” said Philippe Sajhau, vice president IBM France. Regards energy management, Alessandro Pellicano from ENEL-X pointed out that technologies exist and that it is possible to decarbonise a marina by delivering clean fuel to marina users. The path to sustainable industrial development is through data sharing and transparency as these drive the digitisation tech players. At the heart of these discussions, the Digital Twin concept continues to prove its worth. A system capable of anticipating the carbon footprint of infrastructure, it can also model the environment and predict how it will evolve with the aid of artificial intelligence algorithms, noted Nicolas Leterrier, CTO at Schneider. David-Pierre Mangiapan from NGE Connect confirmed that a whole range of solutions exist to “capture” the environment, and that savings of up to 20% can be made on water consumption and 50% on energy. It is important to note that to optimise water resources smart systems are essential, particularly for detecting leaks. Deploying sensors opens up another group of applications, said Nicolas Leterrier. Taking inspiration from electric vehicles, “rechargeable” yachts can supply the grid when necessary. This so-called “prosumer” approach could be an important element when integrating innovative technologies into eco-responsible boats. One caveat, however, for Mark Brown from Teledyne, is that digital solutions may come with a cybersecurity risk. Earl Presson commented that among startups competing for the Innovation Prize, companies dealing with cybersecurity received their full attention and that this initiative had resulted in them making contact to look at future collaborations. Winning awards Although the Smart & Sustainable Marina initiative fostered a day of valuable and focused discussions on what the marina industry needs to explore and implement, its prime goal was to tap into tech-savvy ‘sustainability’ solutions that the industry could adopt. – November/December 2021 53

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