Motorboat & Yachting: Widespread use of Green Diesel by leisure boaters in Ireland has led to a European Court of Justice summons. The Irish government is being taken to court by the European Commission (EC) over the use of Green Diesel by leisure boat owners.
Green Diesel is a form of marked fuel, similar to Red Diesel in the UK, which benefits from a reduced tax rate. It is meant to be used by working fishing boats only, but as many leisure boaters in Ireland use Green Diesel as they rely on the fishing community’s refuelling points.
In theory, leisure boat owners are meant to file a tax return at the end of the year and pay the difference to the government. However, the EC has said that the low number of tax returns filed show that this is not happening in many cases.
In a statement, the EC warned of the consequences: “Private leisure boats cannot only use fuel intended for fishing vessels but also risk heavy penalties if they travel to another Member State and the boat is inspected by the local authorities.”
The European body warned the Irish government to close this loophole in a memo published in April, but a lack of response has led to legal action.
Harry Hermon, chief executive of the Irish Sailing Association, said that setting up separate fuelling points for leisure boaters is not a feasible option:
“It will be an enormous and costly task to create a network of ‘white’ diesel suppliers exclusively for leisure craft. The cost involved and the return would not be viable for suppliers.”
He added that any ban on Green Diesel would result in boat owners using their cars to carry jerry cans of fuel from petrol stations to their marina, a practice which is both dangerous and illegal.
In response to the possibility of prosecution overseas, Mr Hermon added: “The Irish Sailing Association has received no reports from any boats travelling abroad having difficulties as a result of the green diesel in their tanks.”
This news follows a similar development in the UK, which saw the EC challenge the British government over Red Diesel earlier this year.
Motorboat & Yachting: Sunseeker har confirmed its full line-up and the Sunseeker 28M will be the largest boat from the Poole yard to go on display at the 2015 CWM FX London Boat Show from 9-18 January.
The Poole-based manufacturer will be exhibiting eight vessels, ranging in size from the San Remo 485 to the Sunseeker 28M. Launched at the 2012 London Boat Show, the Sunseeker 28M is powered by a pair of 12-cylinder MTU engines that generate 2,000hp each, giving a top speed of 30 knots.
This news comes hot on the heels of the recent announcement that there will be a London Boat Show launch for the all-new Sunseeker Predator 57.
Other models on display at the London Excel Centre will include the Manhattan 55, Manhattan 65, 68 Sport Yacht, 75 Yacht and 86 Yacht. If placed end-to-end, these eight models would measure 566ft.
Advance tickets for the 2015 CWM FX London Boat Show are on sale now, with prices starting at £10 per adult.
Motorboat & Yachting: Salvage specialist Seaflex has raised that last remaining D-Day landing craft from the bottom of Liverpool docks.
After four years lying at the bottom of Liverpool docks, the last remaining D-Day landing craft has finally been refloated. LCT 7074 Landfall made numerous successful deployments to Normandy’s Gold Beach in 1944, carrying up to 11 Sherman tanks at a time across the English Channel.
At the end of the war, she was transferred to Liverpool’s Canning Dock where she was converted into a naval repair facility and later a lunch club, which closed in 2006.
When Landfall sank in 2010, a local seafarers’ association launched a campaign to save her, but it took four years to secure the £1m required from the Heritage Lottery Fund to complete the job. Liverpool-based contractor Salvesen UK began survey dives in March of this year, before salvage specialist Seaflex carried out the refloat last month.
A total of 230-tons of buoyancy and a floating crane were needed to raise the 187ft D-Day landing craft over a three-week period.
Ben Board, technical site support manager at Seaflex, said: “It was a great honour to work on such a prestigious UK heritage project. “We built our business on this type of salvage work and it is very much in our own heritage.” Following the refloat, Landfall has been transferred to a Portsmouth Naval Base for restoration works.
See article at Motorboat & Yachting – Click here
Practical Boat Owner: Royal Navy warship HMS Argyll has dealt a third blow to smugglers after seizing more than 850kg of cocaine in a high speed midnight chase across the Caribbean.
It is the third drugs bust for HMS Argyll in as many months with this latest haul having a wholesale value of £36million, in total she has now seized 1,600kg of cocaine with a combined value of more than £68million.
Secretary of state for Defence Michael Fallon said: ‘HMS Argyll has had phenomenal success in disrupting the drugs trade which continues to blight the UK. Her crew are doing outstanding and demanding work, and the British people will rightly be proud of, and grateful for, their professionalism and commitment. He added: ‘Thanks to them, drugs destined for our streets never reach our shores.’
HMS Argyll apprehended the suspect vessel after being alerted by a US customs aircraft, which directed the ship to intercept. The Plymouth-based frigate was pushed to maximum speed and quickly closed the 70 mile gap.
After a high speed chase, during which time the smugglers began to throw their illegal cargo overboard, the warship used high tech radar to guide her small patrol boats which surrounded the smugglers and forced them to surrender.
Lieutenant Matthew Turner, who was in charge of the Bridge at the time of the chase, said: ‘It was an intense couple of hours as we were trying to out-think and out-manoeuvre a small boat which can change direction in an instant.’
As part of her counter narcotics operations, and reflecting the commitment of the UK to work with partner nations, HMS Argyll carries a US Coast Guard Law Enforcement Detachment (LEDET).
To conduct a board and search of a suspect vessel, members of the LEDET and the ship’s crew are launched together in the ship’s boats. In recent weeks HMS Argyll has provided assistance to Bermuda in the wake of Hurricane Gonzalo, conducted two further counter-narcotics seizure and hosted His Royal Highness the Prince of Wales in Colombia.
Motorboat & Yachting: Suzuki is claiming a first for the marine industry with its new outboard engine keyless start technology with a keyless start will be launched on the DF200AP outboard engine.
Available initially on the DF200AP model, the system features a key fob that transmits an access code to the engine when the skipper is within one metre of the console. This means that all the owner needs to do to is turn on the ignition system and start the engine up at the touch of a button. Suzuki claims that the keyless start system will help to deter thieves. The key fob also floats, so dropping it overboard won’t be a disaster.
Masahiro Yamamoto, general manager for Suzuki Marine European Liaison Office, said: “We’re pleased to bring the Suzuki Keyless Start System into the marine market as it will provide boaters with enhanced security and convenience.
“Our engineers take a lot of time and care over the development of new technologies and we’re confident this system will prove popular among our customers.” The Suzuki DF200AP outboard engine with keyless start will be launched in early 2015.
Yachting & Boating World: Japanese company Shimizu Corp claim technology to build sustainable housing on the seabed will be ready by 2030.
Japanese developers have unveiled innovative plans to build a sustainable underwater city. Shimizu Corp are claiming the technology required to build housing on the seabed will be ready by 2030.
“The ocean has an infinite amount of possibilities,” the firm said, as they reveal a blueprint for underwater living. This is a real goal, not a pipe dream,” Shimizu spokesman Hideo Imamura told the Guardian.
The sustainable Ocean Spiral, expected to cost three trillion yen (£16bn), will house 5,000 people, and draw energy from the seabed. Shimizu Corp has developed the project as a sustainable solution to rising sea levels.
The structure will be formed of three sections; a floating bubble of 500 metres in diameter called the Ocean Spiral’s Blue Garden, at the surface of the sea will house business, homes and hotels. The Infra Spiral – 15km spiral will connect this sphere to the ‘earth factory,’ where energy will be taken from the seabed in order to power the structure.
The factory will turn carbon dioxide into methane by extracting microorganisms, while generators will use differences in seawater temperature will produce power. Hydraulic pressure systems will also produce and pump fresh water into the housing pod.
The project is being developed and backed by experts from Tokyo University, government ministries and energy firms. Project manager Masaki Takeuchi told the Asahi Shimbun newspaper: “It would be great if research institutions and governments become interested in our project. However, not everyone is blown away by the plans; assistant professor in the urban studies department at Tokyo University, Christian Dimmer said: “techno-utopias” such as Ocean Spiral were a response to crises.
“It’s good that many creative minds are picking their brains as to how to deal with climate change, rising sea levels and the creation of resilient societies – but I hope we don’t forget to think about more open and democratic urban futures in which citizens can take an active role in their creation, rather than being mere passengers in a corporation’s sealed vision of utopia,” Dimmer said.
Shizimu Corp are not new to developing extravagant projects, others among their portfolio include floating botanical cities, a crystal palace-esque air pyramid, and a space hotel.
See article at Yachting & Boating World – Click here
Yachting & Boating World: The 74-year-old went missing earlier this month after his yacht was found drifting off Brighton. Police dive teams have begun carrying out underwater searches in Brighton Marina in a bid to find missing yachtsman Len King.
Sussex Police began their operations on Monday and are expected to finish on Wednesday. The 74-year-old from East Sussex went missing on 9 November after his 70ft Sunseeker Stefefree was found unmanned, banging into the marina wall.
Sussex Police said in a statement: “Divers from Sussex Police’s Specialist Search Unit have been undertaking a search at Brighton Marina in connection with the disappearance of yachtsman Len King on November 9.
“The search is a part of enquiries ongoing into his disappearance. The search on Wednesday started again at 10am inside the marina arm.”
Mr King’s wife raised concerns for his safety late on the Sunday after he failed to return home from a solo sailing trip.
A major search operation was launched immediately after, involving several RNLI lifeboats and a coastguard helicopter, but was sadly unable to find any trace of the missing yachtsman and was later suspended on 10 November.
Speaking of his disappearance, Mr King’s wife Stephanie has previously said: “Len is an experienced yachtsman and has been sailing since he was at least 20. Normally we go together but during the week if its calm weather he may go off by himself.
“He went off just before lunch. I was expecting him home for dinner time. I phoned him several times but his phone was unable to connect so I thought he was on his way back. I called the person who has a boat next to us and he thought we were away.
“I can’t understand what has happened. He is a very experienced yachtsman. He has all his equipment doubled up and is always careful. That is the way he runs things.”
Officers are liaising with Mr King’s family as they continue enquiries surrounding his disappearance.
Motorboat & Yachting: Visitor numbers at the 2014 Fort Lauderdale Boat Show were at their highest level since 2006, organisers have announced 6% rise in attendance for this year show.
The 2014 Fort Lauderdale Boat Show has been hailed as a “banner year” by organisers Show Management, who have claimed a 6% rise in visitors. This made the latest instalment the busiest Fort Lauderdale Boat Show since 2006. Likewise the fleet of boats on display was close to 1,500 – the highest level in six years.
More than 1,000 exhibitors filled the 3million square feet of marinas and pontoons, which marked a 3% rise on 2013. Efrem ‘Skip’ Zimbalist III, CEO of Show Management, said: “This year’s show was a clear indication that the American yachting market has turned and both buyers and sellers are confident and back out on the docks.”
These claims are backed up by industry figures that show a 36% rise in sales over four years for the local tri-county area of Broward County, Miami-Dade County and Palm Beach County. Ocean Alexander were one of a number of exhibitors to report encouraging sales from the 2014 Fort Lauderdale Boat Show, with three models sold at the show, including a 120ft superyacht.
Motorboat & Yachting: Princess Yachts has confirmed the line-up of boats that it will be bringing to the Excel Centre in January for the 2015 London Boat Show.
In keeping with its status as one of the biggest names in boating, Princess Yachts’ London Boat Show line-up is packed with new models. The Plymouth-based manufacturer has confirmed that it will be bringing along ten models ranging in size from the entry-level V39 to the bespoke Princess 88.
Star of the show will be the recently launched Princess S72, which has its public debut at the Miami Boat Show earlier this year. Meanwhile, the Princess 68 will be on display at the London Boat Show for the first time, and the V48 Open will showcase Volvo Penta’s latest IPS engines. The 2015 London Boat Show runs from 9-18 January and advance tickets are on sale now, with prices starting at £10 per adult.
The full Princess Yachts London Boat Show line-up is as follows: Princess 88, Princess 82, Princess 72, Princess 68 (all new) Princess 56, Princess 52, Princess 43, Princess V39, Princess V48 Open and Princess S72.
Practical Boat Owner: A heart-warming new children’s Christmas book, which can be personalised to put young readers at the centre of the story, is now on sale – with all profits supporting the Royal National Lifeboat Institution’s (RNLI) lifesaving work.
Written by the RNLI’s senior editor Rory Stamp, and illustrated by award-winning Hannah Cumming, the buyer can select the name, gender and skin tone of the child so they can see themselves at the heart of the story.
Michael Nield, crew member at Tower lifeboat station in central London, said: ‘”The Big Christmas Rescue can be personalised so that your little loved one is the star of the story. It is a lovely book and it will make an ideal gift for young children, with all profits helping the RNLI save lives at sea.”
“This Christmas, volunteer lifeboat crew members across the UK and Ireland will be on call, ready to drop everything and save lives at sea when the pager goes off.”
The Big Christmas Rescue is set on a wet and windy Christmas Eve night and most children are tucked up in bed. But when Santa crashes his sleigh in the sea, volunteer RNLI lifeboat crew members go to the rescue – with the help of a very special child.
Author Rory, 37, is editor of the charity’s Lifeboat magazine. Based at RNLI HQ in Poole, Dorset, he has written many stories of heroism and drama over the 10 years he’s worked for the charity.
He said: “I wrote the story in the build up to Christmas 2013 and was able to try it out on the most honest and beautiful critics I could possibly have found, my daughters Lucie and Hattie. It is wonderful to see this book being well-loved by kids, introducing them to the RNLI as well as raising money to help keep volunteer lifeboat crews equipped, trained and safe.”
Bristol illustrator Hannah Cumming was shortlisted for the Portsmouth Book Award in 2012 for her book The Lost Stars and has also written and illustrated two other books – The Cloud and The Red Boat. She has illustrated for the NSPCC and CBeebies, and has painted a Gromit sculpture for the hugely popular Gromit Unleashed trail in Bristol.
Hannah, 31, said: “It was such a pleasure illustrating this book, not least because it’s the sort of lovely, heart-warming Christmas story I used to read every Christmas Eve as a child. But also because it was an opportunity to celebrate the vital work the brave RNLI volunteers carry out all year round.”
The book is priced at £9.95 and is available to order online at RNLISHOP.org/BigRescue. The last order date for The Big Christmas Rescue to guarantee delivery before Christmas is Monday 15 December 2014.
RNLI lifeboat crews launched 122 times across the UK and Ireland during last year’s festive period, from 23 December to 1 January, rescuing 62 people and saving five lives – with six launches taking place on Christmas day.
See article at Practical Boat Owner