State designates boatyard as clean marina
The state Coastal Resources Management Council recently designated Conanicut Marine Services as a clean marina under its statewide Clean Marina Program. It is the fourth marina to receive the designation.
Conanicut Marine has been in operation since 1974. It joins Allen Harbor Marina in North Kingstown, Point Judith Marina in Narragansett, and Ram Point Marina in Wakefield.
The coastal council adopted the Clean Marina Program in February 2007. The voluntary program is designed to reward marinas that go beyond regulatory requirements by applying innovative management practices to their day-to-day operations to prevent pollution.
“This is a great program that I very much encourage other professionals in the marina and boatyard world to revisit and pursue,” said Bill Munger, owner of Conanicut Marine.
In the early 1980s, Munger said he became a member of the American Boat Builders and Repairers
Association, and also an early member of the International Marina Institute. Environmental awareness was engrained into marina and boatyard managers by cofounder Neil Ross.
Munger in 1992 became a certified marina manager. In 1996, Conanicut Marine was recognized by the Environmental Protection Agency. A couple of years later, Conanicut Marine added a pumpout boat to service the holding tanks for free for the 160-boat mooring field. The marina constructed “total containment” work bays at the shop facility.
“Conanicut Marine’s environmental efforts are ongoing and sincere,” Munger said.
As part of the program, a guidebook and self-assessment checklist serve as tools to assist boatyards toward becoming clean marinas, a designation that certifies they have voluntarily exceeded regulatory requirements and have adopted measures to reduce pollution.
A pledge requires clean marinas to do their part to keep the state’s waters free of harmful chemicals, excess nutrients and debris. Marina owners also pledge to control pollution associated with vessel maintenance, fueling, sewage and storm water.
“[Conanicut Marine] has always taken a proactive approach to protecting the environment, really leading the way with green practices and sharing its lessons learned with others in the industry locally as well as nationally,” said Wendy Mackie, CEO of the Rhode Island Marine Trades Association, a program partner. “Its recent installation of solar panels in its storage facility is a perfect example of the commitment Conanicut Marine has to the greening of their business.”