Rowing 3,000 miles across the Atlantic Ocean – for sustainability

At Vestre, we give 10 % of our annual profit to global initiatives that support the UN’s sustainable development goals. If more businesses followed suit, in Norway alone, we could match the Norwegian aid budget. Not just once, but twice. That says something about what we could achieve on a global basis.

So, we welcome you to this series, where we follow our 10 %, where it goes and exactly how it contributes to a better world. Our hope in sharing this is that our efforts will inspire more profitable businesses to give their piece of the pie to sustainable causes. And to not forget that good deeds are good business.

From the Canary Islands to Antigua
One of the initiatives we support is One Ocean. On the 12th of December, four women started their 3000-mile race across the Atlantic, from La Gomera in the Canary Islands to Antigua in the Caribbean. Why? Their mission is clear: to raise awareness for ocean protection, encouraging people to live and act more sustainably.

We only have one ocean
The first principle of ocean literacy states that the Earth has one big ocean with many features. Meaning that whatever happens in one part of the ocean can affect the other parts.

​Although our ocean is large, its resources are limited and only around 7.5% of our ocean is protected. This is critical for people to understand as our ocean makes life on Earth possible. It is also why One Ocean have made it their mission to help protect this valuable, natural resource.

So, what exactly are the One Ocean crew doing to protect our ocean?

  1. They raise money for the Sea Ranger Service. An organization with an incredible mission statement: to preserve 1 million hectares of previous ocean biodiversity by 2050 whilst supporting 20,000 young people to kickstart a maritime career.
  2. They inspire people to reconnect with nature. By increasing awareness and understanding of this precious natural resource they hope that they will be able to help protect it for future generations. Throughout their journey, One Ocean will be sharing their story with you and a global audience.
  3. They are rowing across the Atlantic in the first eco rowing boat to compete in the Talisker Whisky Atlantic Challenge. By competing with an eco-boat, One Ocean hope to demonstrate the potential for sustainable design and manufacturing.

The race and the eco-boat Vaquita
Vaquita is one of 35 boats to enter the race, and they are one of five all-female teams. Ocean rowing continues to be a male dominated sport and the Ocean One crew hope to inspire other women to take on this and other challenges. They will be rowing two hours on, two hours off, 24 hours a day for upwards of 40 days. The crew will be rowing unsupported - carrying all their food (4,500 calories per day each), a water maker and all the equipment they need to repair and maintain the boat for up to 55 days at sea. The 8m long eco-boat has two small cabins at either end for sleeping.

It is also the only eco-boat in the race. The boat is made using over 10,000 recycled plastic bottles, plant-based epoxy and manufactured using renewable energy. It has solar panels to generate energy for both the water maker (which turns sea water into drinking water) and the navigation systems. The eco-boat is named Vaquita after a species of porpoise that are on the brink of extinction.

Rowing for sustainability
One Ocean supports four of the UN’s sustainable development goals: SDG 8 (Decent work and economic growth), SDG 12 (Responsible consumption and production), SDG 13 (Climate action), and SDG 14 (Life below water). You can follow their journey across the Atlantic and learn more about the initiative here.

  • Sum contributed: £ 5,000
  • Partnership years: One-time contribution, 2021