Sustainability entrepreneur and former F1 champion Nico Rosberg has opened up about his eco partnership with Polish multihull specialist Sunreef Yachts.
Rosberg was unveiled as the builder’s eco brand ambassador earlier this year after the shipyard launched a full range of eco catamarans packed with green technologies.
Speaking to BOAT International in the latest episode of the BOAT Briefing podcast, Rosberg revealed why he teamed up with Sunreef.
“Sunreef is really trail-blazing when it comes to sustainable luxury yachting,” he said. “It’s fascinating what they’re doing.”
Earlier this year, the yard launched an Eco Line of motor and sailing catamarans, which range from 12.1 metres to 30.48 metres.
The line combines eco-friendly propulsion, energy efficiency and sustainable materials. Key eco features include lithium battery banks, solar panels, wind turbines and green propulsion packages. The catamarans will also feature a "solar skin" - meaning solar panels will be integrated into various exrterior surfaces.
Sunreef has also turned its attention to construction materials, which feature ethically sourced teak or cork-based decking, recyclable sailings, non-toxic bottom paint and hulls built from linen and basalt instead of fibreglass.
Rosberg described these innovations as “a huge jump in sustainability”.
“Those are the kind of steps which I [find] fascinating and really respect”, he added.
Reflecting on his partnership with Sunreef, Rosberg also pointed to the GreenTech Festival, which he founded in Berlin, as well as his role as an investor and shareholder of the all-electric racing series Formula E.
“Everything I’m doing as an entrepreneur is based on sustainability and eco so [myself and Sunreef are] a great match,” he said.
His sustainability mission began when he retired from racing in 2016 after winning the Formula 1 world championship. Post-retirement, his life has been “one of searching”, he said.
“I think particularly in this space of taking care of the environment and supporting us as a whole (…) that has given me a lot of purpose.”
He called on the wider superyacht industry to do more on sustainability, revealing that Sunreef’s Eco Line is already attracting widespread attention from buyers.
“Every industry in the world needs to become more conscious of the environmental damage that’s being done and need to position themselves accordingly and do a better job with that,” he said.
“I think it is important to set an example as well and say it is possible, people will buy those boats. [The Eco Line] is really starting to kick off now (…) because eco is cool and that’s awesome – that we’ve come to a point today in the world where eco is cool”.