At the TAG Heuer VELAFestival to save the Mediterranean.


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From May 2 to 5 in Santa Margherita the big sailing festival will have an “eco” soul. Zero-impact boating solutions, eco-sailors, meetings, green boats, gadgets and prizes

Under the banner of sustainability. The Mare Nostrum is in danger and we must protect it together….

We all realize this as soon as we leave the harbor or when we walk along the waterfront. Our Mediterranean is in danger, choked by plastic and pollution. And we are also at great risk by eating fish intoxicated with oils and microplastics.

We will be saved by the sailboat. The most “eco” medium there is, because its engine is one of the four elements of nature itself, air. We are deeply convinced of this and we will prove it with the TAG Heuer VELAFestival 2019 (May 2-5, Santa Margherita Ligure), which will be an emblem and flag of eco-sustainability.

Primarily with the strong presence (in a dedicated area) of Medplastic, the initiative launched by the Sailing Newspaper to protect the sea that has been able to turn into a movement: With the “sentinels of the Mediterranean,” a people of more than 5,000 sailors/activists who helped us clean up the Mare Nostrum last summer.

With campaigns against politics and its absurd laws, such as one that prevents fishermen, who catch garbage and floating plastics in their nets while fishing, from bringing them ashore for disposal; with in-depth coverage of hot topics, from microplastics to tutorials for becoming eco-sailors via good examples to follow.

Speaking of eco-sailors: at VELAFestival we will have the quintessential one. Matthew Miceli, the first to have embarked on a zero-impact solo round-the-world trip. Matteo will give a lecture on how to sail without polluting and will be on hand throughout the event to advise you on the least impactful solutions possible for your boat.

Then, the topic of fiberglass boat recycling is hot, hot, hot. In the next issue of the Journal of Sailing (March) we devoted a feature to it, at the VELAFestival there will be a lot of talk about it, with a “focus” event and many speakers. To understand where obsolete boats end up, and what can be done to activate a virtuous recycling system. What about new boats? We have already explained to you that a fast boat is also an environmentally friendly boat, because it allows you to sail even in breezes. At the quayside in Santa le you can touch and understand it for yourself. Not to mention that we will also have flying hulls equipped with state-of-the-art foils: lots of speed, zero engine.

The Medplastic Eco Solutions area will host products, companies, and boats that are trying their best with a view to sustainability, and since we are convinced that VELAFestival should be as “plastic-free” as possible we will distribute an eco kit to all VELAFestival visitors to reduce the daily use of single-use plastic as much as possible.

We will also have a dedicated desk where we will ask you to sign Medplastic’s manifesto to save the Mediterranean and join our community as active members. At the TAG Heuer VELA Cup we will enhance “vintage” boats with a separate ranking, because it is sustainable to enhance existing hulls, against the illogical logic of “disposable” and “I change the boat every three years.”

And now, let’s come to the awards: this year’s Sailor of the Year will have its “green” component with the Eco Medplastic award to sailors or companies that have distinguished themselves through responsible behavior, and we will certainly prepare other eco awards.

We will then award the winners of the No Plastic Instagram contest, which took you to collect plastic waste around our shores last summer. And again, we are organizing a conference where we will talk about boating and sustainability, with very important names. So much we have revealed to you, so much we have yet to reveal about this TAG Heuer VELAFestival 2019, the great festival of sailing in the Mediterranean. Our sea to be protected.

Eugene Ruocco


Time to Take Action is the slogan of Medplastic, the project of the Journal of Sailing and Powerboats to safeguard the Mediterranean. Join the MedPlastic Team Facebook group, there you can post news, projects, photodenunciations, videos. In addition, if you have structured projects to propose that you think would be useful to the “cause,” please send an email to



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