Lyndsey Lewis, operations and sustainability manager for Quark Expeditions commented, ‘This comprehensive report establishes a baseline—and culture — of accountability in the Arctic and Antarctic.’
Lewis added, ‘Last April, we unveiled our sustainability strategy under the title ‘Polar Promise’. As part of this effort, we shared specific, concrete goals which we intend to meet by 2025.’
This report, ‘marks how we’ve been tracking with respect to those goals and clearly outlines our commitment moving forward,’ said Lewis.
Quark Expeditions is celebrating its 30th anniversary.
‘Sustainability has always part of our DNA,’ says the company’s sustainability manager.
‘We were one of the founding members of the International Association of Antarctica Tour Operators (IAATO), and we’ve been active in the environmental conservation efforts of the Association of Arctic Expedition Cruise Operators (AECO) since 2007. This first annual Sustainability Report cements our ongoing role in safeguarding the pristine polar regions for generations to come.’
Quark Expeditions’ lists several sustainability achievements including: enabling scientists to access remote locations in both the Arctic and Antarctic and donate the proceeds from its onboard auctions to science and conservation organizations.
To date, the company has donated $250,000 to the citizens science group Penguin Watch, which studies penguin population change.
Since 2017, Quark Expeditions has donated $46,000 of the proceeds onboard auctions to support the Habitat Restoration Project, administered by the South Georgia Heritage Trust, which successfully eliminated invasive rodents (which impacted bird populations) from South Georgia in 2018.
Quark Expeditions continues to support South Georgia Heritage Trust’s efforts to maintain this rodent-free declaration.
In 2017, Quark Expeditions eliminated single use plastics and in 2018-19, diverted 103.11 cubic meters of glass, 60.11 cubic meters of plastic and 106.82 cubic meters of cardboard.
Historical analysis confirms that Quark Expeditions’ has decreased emissions from its fleet by 28% since 2010.
Ultramarine arriving 2021
It is currently building Ultramarine, which will be launching in 2021. Ultramarine’s advanced sustainability features include: the Micro Auto Gasification System (MAGS), which converts waste into energy; four diesel engines to meet fluctuating power needs; a heat recovery system; eco-friendly lighting; and a re-imagined hull and propeller design that ensures the lowest possible resistance (which translates into energy savings).
Click here to download the full Sustainability Report.