Everything we do is centred around the environment

Our everyday actions help preserve the quality of the environment. It is thanks to these actions that over the years our port has become a reference point for sustainable management.

A closer look at our work

At the marina

Green routine

We have opted for eco-friendly means of operations:

  • LED lighting on all pontoons
  • Timers
  • Fair Trade Certified timber to replace worn out planks on pontoons
  • Eco-friendly high pressure boat-wash with desalinated water and organic detergents (end of pontoon 19) – see map p 16 – free of charge – token available at the Capitainerie
  • Effective treatment of careening waters

Environmental certification

This is a European environmental management process for marinas. It reflects the desire of marina managers to make practical commitments in the effort to preserve aquatic environments and to create sustainable development of coastal and marine activities.

The “Clean Harbour” approach aims to support any operation with the intention of improving the environmental quality at marinas and fishing ports, by considering the common issues of waste management and effluent discharge in ports.

This is a comprehensive process comprising five distinct, but essential, phases:

  • Environmental diagnosis
  • The means to fight chronic pollution
  • Implementation of means to fight accidental pollution; water and energy saving
  • Marina staff training in environmental management
  • Marina environmental awareness management

The aim is to assist marina managers in their environmental management using the necessary methods and tools.

The European Clean Harbour certification, created by and for marina managers, whatever their status, and whatever the status of the body of water, or, in the case of dry ports, the reclaimed land, is the only specific European certification for ports.

The European Clean Harbour certification ensures the maintenance and promotion of good environmental management in marinas.

We are engaging professionals and sailors in the pursuit of sustainablility by:

  • Collecting and selecting 11 different types of waste,offering marina users free dedicated liners
  • Collecting and treating careening waters
  • Cleaning up critical waste through our special agents the “blue brigade”
  • Collecting bilge waste: dedicated containers on lift dock and service berth
  • Collecting black and grey water on Capitainerie pontoon and on service berth (one machine at either end). In case of emergency and for large craft ask for bateau O’propre
  • Selling organic cleaning products (detergents, soaps, shampoo etc…)
  • Having a permanent member of staff in charge of environmental issues
  • Promoting public awareness during the high season
  • Inviting people for an eco-citizen walk all year round in partnership with Echo-Mer to heighten awareness as to our environmental challenges and issues (see dates and details on our website)
  • Including the Marina on the access map of La Rochelle together with promoting the alternative means of transport developed by the town and regional authorities (see p 78 Let yourself get carried away!

The Blue Brigade

This team, originally dedicated to cleaning the port (of solid waste), works on a daily basis.

Over the last few years, the team’s work has extended to include manual weeding, the protection and development of biodiversity, and raising environmental awareness.

Raising awareness for port users

“Operation Pontoon”

This operation has been run every summer for almost ten years and involves going to the sixty or so pontoons to give out over 400 free battery container kits (tennis ball boxes collected and redeployed by the “Echo-Mer” association).

The deconstruction process for a pleasure boat

On 2 March 2019, the APER (eco-friendly amateur sailing association) was named the official environmental organisation for the processing of waste produced by pleasure or sports boats. The APER is responsible for establishing and managing this procedure throughout France, arranging the deconstruction of pleasure or sports boats at the end of their life and accompanying the owners throughout the treatment process. The APER puts boat holders/owners in touch with selected treatment centres all over France to ensure boat deconstruction takes place in an environmentally friendly way and in accordance with regulations.


Why recycle your pleasure boat?

  • Pleasure boat owners should be aware of their responsibility to correctly dispose of their boat. Recycling a boat requires specific protocol in order to avoid any visual or environmental pollution.
  • Recycling a pleasure boat needs to be done on a dedicated site that meets the numerous regulatory requirements concerning environmental protection.
  • The APER eco-organisation gives you the opportunity to have your boat deconstructed in an environmentally friendly way and in accordance with applicable regulations.


The eco-organisation will take care of the cost of deconstruction (excluding transport costs). If you would like more information, or to find your nearest certified deconstruction centre, please visit www.recyclermonbateau.fr

Dispositif Vague Bleue

Blue wave®, CRMA Bretagne [regional chamber for trades and crafts Brittany] brand, is a collective action for waste management. This « green device » is built in partnership with the Community of Agglomeration of La Rochelle (28 cities), the local nautical companies network, the French Loire & Bretagne Water Agency, The Commercial Chamber of la Rochelle and the French Nautical Industry Network (F.I.N.).

What the professionals say:

The “Vague Bleue” plan allows us to collaborate on the treatment of toxic waste. With no dedicated recycling centre, it provides for improved management of production waste, notably for small companies. As professionals, we have a duty to respect regulations! When you become a member of Vague Bleue, you ensure waste traceability, you benefit from discounted rates for boat launches, and you become more transparent for your customers. What are the objectives? Maintain this plan and obtain financial stability!

– Olivier Grassi

The gestures of the boater

Acting to limit the ecological impact

  • I pick up the plastic bags that float in the water because protected species, swallow the plastic bags they take for jellyfish and choke. In addition, plastic bags can block the cooling system of the boats and cause engine damage.
  • I respect the minimum catch sizes and the authorized material because by catching fish below the allowed sizes, I prevent the natural renewal of species and I reduce the resources. Similarly, during my purchases I do not buy fish or crustaceans below these sizes.
  • For my shellfish fisheries, I respect the allowed quantities and sizes because they are fragile and essential resources for the marine ecosystem.
  • I evacuate my garbage and empty my wastewater tanks only in the locations provided for this purpose by the harbor manager.

Please send your comments or suggestions on these messages to  mnp.dam.dgmt@développement-durable.gouv.fr

Respect the fauna and flora

  • I first wet on the sand in order to preserve the posidonia or zostera herbaria and then I rinse my anchor on the spot.
  • I avoid practicing noisy motor activities that damage the fauna and flora outside the zones dedicated to this purpose.
  • At sea and in the river, I respect the natural environment by avoiding the degradation of sensitive areas, the nesting and breeding grounds of the local fauna: reed beds, banks, small islets, rivers during periods of low water.
  • I respect the underwater environment by refraining from raising anything, avoiding feeding the fish or damaging the seabed with my hands or my fins. Contact with coral may have irreversible effects on its development

Preventing aquatic pollution

  • I prefer heavy bags or baskets to carry my things because a bag too light would risk flying. In the same way, I am particularly attentive to all the light objects that the wind.
  • I do not use my marine toilets near the shore unless I equip my boat with black water tanks, because organic pollution can favor the proliferation of some species at the expense of all the others. Many ports now offer drainage systems.
  • I carefully fill the fuel tank of my boat: preferably at the dock and using a funnel large enough not to spill fuel in the water.
  • Aboard my boat, I use environmentally friendly products. The ports offer all kinds of equipment to ensure life on board (sanitary facilities, dishwashers, showers).
  • I banish toxic products to wash my boats to favor biodegradable products.