Celebrating Earth Day


We at the Atlantic Cup presented by 11th Hour Racing are proud to be the most sustainable sailing race in the United States! Today, being Earth Day and with race day less than 20 days from now, we thought it would be fitting to share with you some of our successes in putting on a fully sustainable event. Whether you are a sailor or not, we hope that you’ll take a look around at the many ways we endeavor to run a ‘green’ race and consider making a change for the earth in your life. As our Race Director, Hugh Piggin, often says, “It’s the small changes that add up, so just do something!”
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11th Hour Racing, a program of the Schmidt Family Foundation, is proud to have been the presenting sponsor for the Atlantic Cup since its inception. 11th Hour Racing seeks to establish a dynamic new platform for public education emphasizing the responsible use of energy and resources in the context of sailing, an exciting recreational and competitive sport. Through sponsorship of winning sailing teams and regattas, advanced sailing and production practices, we improve the energy profile and performance of racing boats, and increase the personal investment of sailors in the health of our waters.

We are really excited to have Hornblower Cruises & Events hosting Water Week NYC during the Atlantic Cup New York City stop over. The Atlantic Cup and 11th Hour Racing Present Living on the Edge 2.0 Sponsored by Hornblower Cruises and Events and  all Water Week events will take place on board the Hornblower Hybrid at Pier 25 in New York City. To purchase tickets for the events, click here.

Hornblower Cruises & Events is thrilled to be an official sponsor of the inaugural WaterWeek NYC. As major proponents of and contributors to innovative marine technology and sustainability initiatives in the New York area, Hornblower is proud to support the Atlantic Cup and all those associated with it. The Hornblower Hybrid, the newest member of our New York fleet and the nation’s largest hybrid passenger vessel, epitomizes Hornblower’s dedication to sustainable marine practices and inventive water technologies. The Hybrid can accommodate up to 600 passengers, and features an array of versatile spaces for events and meetings.”


Atlantic Cup Events on Land 

There are a number of events furthering our sustainability messaging and providing opportunites to meet the Atlantic Teams. We hope to see you there! 

May 15th Water Week NYC

May 15th Living on the Edge 2.0

May 22nd The Atlantic Cup and newportFILM present a special outdoor event “Shipyard Shorts a Collection of Adventure & Eco Docs”

May 24th Atlantic Cup Coursewide Clean Up

The Atlantic Cup is leading the way in demonstrating it is possible to run a successful event and still respect the planet. Watch our Green Initiatives video below to see how we run one of the most environmentally responsible sailing races in the world.

WindCheck covers all things Atlantic Cup throughout the year and is a free monthly magazine devoted to sailors and boaters in the Northeast. They produce all of their issues including the Atlantic Cup Race Guide on recycled paper.

Interlux is North America’s leading supplier of boat paint maintenance solutions to help protect, beautify and improve your boat’s performance. Their boat paint solutions, including antifoulingboat primersyacht varnish & more, not only help protect your boat, but also the environment. Interlux has one of the longest track records for copper-free technologies in the industry. 

For the 4th year in a row Newport Biodiesel will supply the Atlantic Cup race boats with biodiesel so the fleet create an 80/20 blend in their engines. While most teams carry another source of alternative fuel (hydrogenerator, fuel cell or solar) there are times when the teams need to run their engines and by using Newport Biodiesel they’re taking one step closer to kicking the fossil fuel habit.
Zip 2 Water provides onsite water filling stations in each city so that teams and guests can fill their canteens. No plastic water bottles are sold or available to guests or teams.
All Atlantic Cup teams use environmentally friendly cleaning products provided by Matt Chem to wash down and clean their boat.
What can you do to help reduce trash from entering the ocean? 

The simple answer to the question is: reduce your single use plastic footprints and support companies that have taken steps to use alternatives to plastic.

5 Gyres also has citizen science programs where volunteers can collect plastic pollution data. The 5 Gyres iGyre Program allows for individuals to borrow a scientific trawl to collect samples on their own voyage.

We are pleased to announce our partnership with Nexus, the official offset supplier for the 2014 Atlantic Cup with carbon credits originating Hydrologic, one of its member organizations. Nexus is a cooperative of development organizations that support vulnerable communities by scaling up successful climate-friendly projects.

Hydrologic aims to provide over half a million households in Cambodia access to clean and safe drinking water by 2020. As a Cambodian social enterprise, spun off from the international non-profit organization iDE, Hydrologic locally manufactures ceramic water purifiers (CWP) that provide clean drinking water to rural households resulting in reduced wood fuel consumption while supporting local economic development. As of April 2014, the project has provided safe drinking water to over 650,000 persons and sold over 100,000 CWPs. For more information and to learn how to support these and other Nexus projects, click here.

Photo: Maggie Ostdahl

Did you know? Plastic constitutes approximately 90% of all trash floating on the ocean’s surface, with an estimated 46,000 pieces of plastic per square mile. The majority of this trash comes from land and eduction of single use plastics is the best way to begin tackling this problem. That is why The Atlantic Cup does not use single use water bottles or disposable cups at any of our events. Make the switch at home to reusable water bottles and click here to learn more about plastic pollution and its solution from Sailors for the Sea.

For three years running the Atlantic Cup has achieved the highest Clean Regatta certification possible from Sailors for the Sea. In obervance of Earth Day, Sailors for the Sea provided this information addressing marine debris, plastic pollution, and micro plastics, a pressing issue for our oceans’ health. 

“Action today so that future generations can continue to enjoy ocean activities.” Newport, Rhode Island based Clean Ocean Access is leading the charge for the largest shoreline cleanup ever in lower Narragansett Bay, Rhode Island. Spanning the Atlantic Cup race course, COA will mobilize hundreds of volunteers to free the shoreline from debris and trash.

Following the cleanup, portions of the debris will be displayed at Fort Adams during the Atlantic Cup’s inshore racing (May 24 – 25 from 11a-3p) allowing for spectators and residents to see what is along our shores. We’re trying to mobilize 500 volunteers to help in the clean up! To get involved, please email: info@cleanoceanaccess.org

Through Atlantic Cup Kids, we educate hundreds of kids of all ages both on site and online. With the help of Captain Dave, we’ll be teaching students about the race, safety at sea and the environment. Even if you’re not visiting us in person, you can follow along at atlanticcup.org/kids

Atlantic Cup Teams to be

Citizen Scientists for 5 Gyres

Each team participating in the Atlantic Cup will carry out daily Marine Debris Visual Observation Surveys while racing that will document all marine debris spotted from one side of the sailing vessel over 60 minutes. Data will be used to help 5 Gyres further their research on plastic pollution in the world’s oceans.

5 Gyres is a nonprofit with a mission is to conduct research and communicate about the impact of plastic pollution in the world’s oceans, and employ strategies to eliminate the accumulation of plastic pollution in the subtropical ocean gyres.


The Atlantic Cup presented by 11th Hour Racing is committed to being the most environmentally responsible sailing race in the United States. Teams, participants and race management work together to create a fully carbon neutral event. As the race grows, we will continue to seek innovative ideas and products that align with our mission and produce a truly sustainable event.
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