West coast ferry operator CalMac has teamed up with 14 conservation bodies in a bid
to better protect the environment it sails in.
The company’s new marine awareness programme outlines specific actions it will take
to help passengers get the most from the environment they are travelling through
and to better understand the wildlife in its area of operations.
Cal Mac ships operate on seas and coasts which are the most diverse sein the world,
supporting over 6,500 complex and 40,000 single cell species of plants and animals.
The west coast are among the richest seas in Europe for marine mammals.
Scotland holds about 70% of Europe's population of grey seals and 35% of common seals
along with numerous species of whales, dolphins and porpoises and seabirds.
Cal Mac’s managing director, Robbie Drummond said: ‘Knowledge is a major part of
protecting the environment for future generations. By finding out what wild resources
we have, we are in better position to take steps to help conserve them.
“Our commitment to the monitoring, education and information sharing activity outlined
in this programme will help ensure we continue to build knowledge about the seas
Actions outlined include using Cal Mac vessels to undertake marine biodiversity monitoring,
passenger engagement and education to raise marine environment awareness with both
visitors and locals and to facilitate better information sharing between conservation
Mr Drummond added: “CalMac understands how important the environment we work in day
to day is to our communities. The natural environment and the wildlife within it
are central to attracting visitors and helping to grow the economies within the areas
“We want to help stimulate this economic growth wherever we can by delivering reliable
services that people want to use. However, it crucial that we balance this with protecting
the very environment that is the driver of this growth.”