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CalMac cutting carbon as part of new eco actions

West Coast Ferry operator CalMac is on course to cut its carbon emissions by 5% this year.

The progress report on cutting down on green house gas production was highlighted in the company's new Environmental Strategy, which outlines detailed steps the company is taking to better protect the environment it sails in.

Key targets include:

  • Reduce carbon footprint by 5% by the end of 2019 against a 2016 baseline
  • Reduce water consumption by 10% by 2020 based on 2016 baseline
  • Deliver action led biodiversity plans at half of CalMac sites by 2020
  • Increase recycling rates by a minimum of 15% by 2020 from 2017 baseline

'Delivering this strategy was a key part of our winning bid for the Clyde and Hebrides Ferry Service contract. We wanted to set achievable objectives that would really make a difference to protecting and enhancing the environment in which we operate,' said CalMac's Environmental Manager, Klare Chamberlain. 

Environmental Picture

Picture shows: Investment in fuel monitoring technology has been a key factor in carbon reduction.

'Environmental issues are now at the forefront of CalMac thinking across the business, and we are confident we will achieve our initial targets by 2020 taking us a step closer to becoming a green leader within the industry.'

The significant reduction in carbon produced is mainly down to the use of fuel monitoring systems, increasing operational efficiency and by working with industry academics to deliver energy efficient vessels. 

Reducing and eliminating waste is another cornerstone of CalMac's environmental pledges. It is working to reduce single use plastics on board and looking at introducing more efficient waste management systems to help reduce, reuse and recycle more effectively.  This will be backed with a new programme designed with with partners to raise awareness of the impact of marine litter. 

'One of the biggest successes over the past few years has been our Marine Awareness Programme, raising the profile of the biodiversity of wildlife across the west coast,' added Klare.

'Since 2015 CalMac has worked with ORCA, a marine mammal charity, on Oceanwatch, a mammal survey to understand mammal populations in European waters. We will also be expanding and building on this work over the next few years to educate passengers about the fantastic biodiversity contained in our waters.'

CalMac worked with 14 partners to develop the programme including Marine Scotland and Scottish Natural Heritage to help passengers get the most from the environment they are travelling through.

Full details of the Environmental Strategy can be viewed at 


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