Clean, Green Boating Routines – Tips for Maintaining a Healthy Lake
Summer is here and that means everyone is looking to enjoy some time out on the water. Whether you’re looking to enjoy some boating on the lakes, rivers, or in the ocean, there are several ways you and your family can practice green boating.
Keep reading below as we define what green boating is, and how you can practice it properly so you can protect the environment (while having fun too!)
What is green boating?
So, you might be wondering – what exactly is green boating? Green, or clean, boating is the act of practicing safe and healthy boat operations with an awareness of local and environmental impact. In other words, it is a conscientious effort to minimize environmental impact while still having fun on marine vessels.
In the grand scheme of things, boating doesn’t seem very eco-friendly to begin with, right? After all, most boats these days require an engine and fuel to function. However, there are plenty of things you can do to reduce the impact your summer fun has on the local wildlife and environment.
Tips for green boating
There are many ways you can practice proper green boating techniques this summer and every year to come. Below are our top five tips:
1. Safe fueling practices
Just because a boat requires an engine and fuel to operate does not mean that it has to produce a negative impact on the water. Practice safe fueling technique to minimize the damage to local wildlife.
To do this, make sure that you aren’t filling the gas tank to the brim. Gas expands when it is heated, so filling to the brim may cause leakage. Additionally, be very careful when fueling so you don’t spill any gasoline into the water. Spilling even a few drops of water can harm the aquatic species living below.
2. Waste management
You should also be focusing on proper waste management when boating. Always keep trash such as water bottles, plastic bags, uneaten food, etc, in a trash bag and remove it all with you when you disembark.
Throwing anything into the water can leave fish and other animals living near by in danger of entanglement. If eaten, these products can cause them internal issues and perhaps even death.
Additionally, no human waste should ever be disposed of in any body of water. All passengers should be using bathrooms on land and not in the water. Even if it’s just urine, that is not healthy for the environment.
3. Protect marine life
Protecting local marine life should always be your priority. To do this, make sure that you don’t feed them anything, no matter how safe it appears. It may be tempting to throw that half eaten apple or those cheese slices over the edge, but these foods are not a part of aquatic diets and may cause serious issues for the animals living below the surface.
Moreover, always make sure that you are not transporting local marine life with you. Don’t take live animals from one body of water to another, and make sure that your boat is properly cleaned when it is being transferred.
Local authorities usually have watercraft inspections for this very reason. When transporting a boat during the summer season, you’ll have to stop occasionally to have your boat inspected for “invasive species.” This is not to get you in trouble with local law enforcement. This is just to make sure that you’re not transporting anything on the boat such as dirt and grime, living species like mussels, or anything that may contaminate other bodies of water.
4. Boat maintenance
Maintaining your boat on a regular basis doesn’t just make it look nice – it helps protect the environment. Practice safe boat maintenance by cleaning it out of the water whenever possible. This will help keep the chemicals from cleaning products from seeping into the water.
Also, try to find eco-friendly cleaning products that don’t have harsh chemicals in them. They may seem nice and smell good, but chemicals are like oil. They permeate the water and cause serious damage to aquatic environments.
And most importantly – make sure that you’re rinsing your boat after cleaning it and allowing it to dry completely before putting in back in the water. This can get any residue left off of the hull.
5. Safety and responsibility
As always, make sure that you are being safe and responsible while on the water. Don’t travel at excessive speeds and make sure that you’re keep an eye out for shallow water, swimming fish, and other boaters.
Additionally, don’t ever leave materials behind such as towels, floats, rafts, clothing, etc. These will only deflate or sink to the bottom where they can cause damage to animals and other boaters.
It is ultimately your responsibility to protect the environment you’re in, so take pride in that and make sure you’re being kind to the area.
Hit the Water!
Now that you know what green boating is, and how to practice it effectively, you’re ready to hit the water!
Looking for a great place to rent fun and affordable boats in Lake Coeur d’Alene? Come see us at Boardwalk Marina. We offer pontoon boat rentals, jet skis and paddle boards, sport boat rentals, and even more.
Located right on the Coeur d’Alene Resort, we are conveniently right on the lake and just minutes from fun and adventure. Give us a call today, we’d love to help you make the most of your summer vacation!