The Energy Observer, the first self-sufficient energy vessel with zero greenhouse gas emissions, is joining forces with Archipelagos Institute of Marine Conservation, aiming to contribute towards efforts to protect marine life.
This hydrogen-powered vessel produces and stores its own energy by hydrolysing seawater and using the power of three different types of photovoltaics. In 2017, the Energy Observer started its own odyssey to visit a total of 101 ports in 50 countries, across five continents – all within a six year period. By crossing the seas and oceans around the world, it proves that traveling at sea without fossil fuel is possible.

After a long preparation phase, Archipelagos’ researchers trained the Energy Observer’s crew in the eastern Aegean. The team was trained on data collection techniques which will assist them in the process of gathering environmental data during the remaining five years of their sea expedition. The focus was on data collection related to the assessment of plastic pollution, as well as monitoring the changes due to climate change and human impacts.

During this training period, the Energy Observer participated in data collection alongside Archipelagos’ research vessel and will soon be equipped with the necessary scientific equipment for the future collection of environmental data. The large data sets will be processed by Archipelagos’ researchers and will be available to the global scientific community as an open source database.
We have high hopes that more ships will have an environmental footprint similar to that of the Energy Observer in the near future.

At a time when we talk so much about the environment, but do so little about it, we should embrace the fact that the seas are not an inexhaustible resource for multiple forms of human exploitation. Changing attitudes and limiting our carbon footprint – regarding the seas and the environment – is not only a priority but also a shared obligation for us all.


Anastasia Miliou,
Scientific Director, Institute of Marine Conservation, “Archipelagos”


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