During Monaco Ocean Week, which took place from 24 to 30 March, the Yacht Club de Monaco organised the 9th La Belle Classe Superyachts Environmental Symposium. This year the meeting had a new format: the whole day was dedicated to one theme, formulated as «Yachting: laboratory of the future / transport for ocean protection». Around 25 speakers from all over Europe addressed boat owners, industry professionals and other interested parties. Discussions covered new yachting routes, environmentally friendly anchorage and new energy sources for propulsion systems.
The day culminated in the presentation of the inaugural La Belle Classe Explorer Awards presented by the Yacht Club de Monaco. The reigning Prince of Monaco His Serene Highness Albert II presented prizes to the winners in five categories. A total of 79 superyachts were nominated for the awards.
«The main criterion by which a candidate for an award is judged is not their ambition to discover new lands, but how a superyacht is designed, why it is used, how it can be used for the benefit of mankind. It could be a technical innovation that has significantly reduced CO2 emissions into the sea, the assistance of scientists, or simply the team's ability to communicate and share their achievements in a way that benefits a large number of people, that more and moremore and more of us understand the need to respect, love and protect the ocean»," explains Bernard d' Alessandri, general secretary of the Yacht Club de Monaco.
The jury was made up of representatives from the Prince of Monaco Foundation, the Oceanographic Museum, the Ifremer Oceanographic Institute, the American, French and Monegasque societies, naval architects and travellers.