Sustainable Maritime Interiors - 2022 Report

139 Where suppliers claim to self-regulate when it comes to sustainability, this can be a red flag due to the difficulty of obtaining evidence that shortcuts are not being taken. Sustainable sourcing requires evidence that suppliers are following basic ESG standards, as evidenced by end-to-end control and inspections. Conversely, where the sustainability claims of suppliers are backed up by evidence, this can be powerfully motivating to sustainability-minded clients. More than one participant in this report says that a supplier’s sustainability strategy was the deciding factor in the decision to specify that supplier’s product for all of the staterooms or public areas on the ship. On occasion, those sourcing materials may find the sustainability guidance they are following is in conflict with IMO regulations. This is certainly an area of concern that could be addressed by the development of industry-wide standards for sustainability of maritime interiors, ideally endorsed by IMO. In the case of some materials and products, the presence of a well-respected certification (such as FSC for wood products) is all that is needed for a product to go to the top of a list of possible choices. But the sustainable choice is not always the most intuitive one, especially where carpets are concerned. For example, wool carpeting may appear to be the most sustainable option due to being made from natural fibres. However, it may be less sustainable over the long term than newgeneration nylon carpet in respect of its inability to be recycled as easily as nylon carpet can be. Increasingly, where teams specifying materials are considering two otherwise similar materials and one of them is made from recycled materials, they will select the recycled one. This suggests that if all other factors are equal, the more sustainable product will win. In view of this, the more that can be done to skew the bias in favour of the conscious supplier winning the contract, the better. If data can be made available regarding the comparative costs and benefits of sustainable interiors, cruise and ferry companies will be better placed to make informed decisions about how far and how fast they can go towards the ideal of meeting higher sustainability standards. As the companies involved with sourcing products for maritime interiors become more sustainability-focused, there is a growing awareness that one-off green initiatives are not enough; the commitment to sustainability needs to go beyond soundbites and become embedded in the way the company does business. – “For the industry to make real gains, designers and outfitters need to be given the responsibility to deliver the most sustainable interiors possible, and the budget to fund it”