Hamilton Island Marine Environment

Hamilton Island are committed to protecting the local environment.

Marine Environment

Environment

We are a Marina Industries Association Level 3 certified Clean Marina, with a focus on sustainable business practices and a commitment to protecting our local environment.

Hamilton Island is part of The Whitsunday Islands and the larger World-Heritage listed Great Barrier Reef Marine Park. As a major holiday destination we are focused on reducing our environmental footprint, encouraging the long-term protection and preservation of the reefs biodiversity. This include the reefs inhabitants, the flora and fauna of our local National Parks.

One of the key goals of our Environmental Guidelines is to promote understanding and participation in environmental conservation of the local marine ecosystem. We aim to do this through education, the provisioning of information and through consultation with employees, contractors, customers and the local community. This provisioning includes up to date information on topics such as sustainable boating and fishing practices, waste management and recycling, monitoring and reporting marine pests.

See below for more information and links to important resources to keep you informed on responsible and sustainable practices while enjoying your time in and around the beautiful Whitsundays area.

Environmental Guidelines

Hamilton Island Marina is committed to best practice for environmental management to reduce the potential impact upon the local waterways, habitat, flora and fauna.

We encourage and support the concept of long-term environmentally sustainable practices across all operations and marine based activities. Hamilton Island Marina requires all operations undertaken to be compliant with all relevant state and federal guidelines and regulatory requirements.

We pride ourselves in fostering positive relationships with our marina guests as well as concessionaire and contracting businesses. This enables us to provide information and training to uphold best environmental management practices.

Recycling

Hamilton Island has its own island based recycling program that has led to an overall reduction in General Waste of 17% YOY over the last two years.

In July 2017, we purchased a liquid food waste composter that converts food waste to grey water. 6t of waste has been processed to date.

We work with facilities located in Mackay to recycle co-mingled waste produced on the island where we collect and bale over 1 tonne per day. Over 400t of cardboard is separated from co-mingled recycling and is packed and sent on to Brisbane for reprocessing.

We also have introduced a process for recycling electronic items such as TVs and computers. These have been diverted from landfill and are being recycled on the mainland for precious metals. We are averaging 1t per month.

Fishing Practices

Hamilton Island Marina is a certified Fish Friendly Marina. As part of the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park, our focus is to maintain healthy fish habitat and waterways in and adjacent to the marina. The following marina rules are in place to assist with our environmental commitment:

  • Nil Discharge of any sewerage, waste, fuel and oil products into marina waterways.
  • Fishing and the Disposal of Fish Waste is Prohibited within the marina basin.
  • Feeding Fish or Birds within the marina basin is prohibited.
  • Any oil leaks or spills must be reported to the marina office immediately, to activate emergency spill response personnel.

Whilst enjoying the Great Barrier Reef marine park, guests wishing to fish are to ensure they are conversant with the zoning regulations. Zoning maps for the Whitsundays are available at the Hamilton Island Chandlery and also digitally at GBRMPA Zoning Map.

The Whitsundays are home to a wide variety of fish species. The book, 100 Magic Miles, has a comprehensive guide for fishing in the Whitsundays, including bag limits and size limits – we highly recommend visitors purchase a copy which can also be found in the Chandlery.

In addition, the following links will assist anglers in accurately identifying their catch:

We ask that all visitors be aware of the issues related to pest fish in our region and if sighted, we recommend you report this to the Department of Agriculture and Fisheries.

Additional information to assist with identifying pest fish.

Marine Pests

Marine plants and animals can be transported across thousands of kilometres of ocean on the hulls of vessels and in the ballast water of ships. Most of these organisms will not survive the journey, and those that do survive will not cope with the conditions of their new environment.

Only a few of the marine species that have been introduced are considered pests. They threaten native biodiversity, commercial fisheries and aquaculture industries, whilst greatly increasing maintenance requirements for vessels.

The Department of Agriculture and Fisheries, has put together a comprehensive guide to the potential marine pest risks for Australian waters, which we recommend you read. All boat owners can contribute to ensuring we keep our waters free from pests.

Marine Life

The Whitsunday Islands National Park and Great Barrier Reef Marine Park are home to some endangered and vulnerable marine life.

We encourage all our guests to observe the marine life they encounter in a safe and respectful manner. If you were to sight any injured or distressed marine life during your time in the region, we recommend contacting 1300 ANIMAL (1300 264 625).

The Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority also have a great new app – Eye on the Reef. This app contains a wealth of information on the weird and wonderful species’ you may encounter during your stay. We recommend downloading this app and encourage all guests to share their marine wildlife sightings with other marine park users.

Sustainable Boating Practices

Hamilton Island Marina promotes sustainable boating practices. This is reflected in our Marina Rules where our commitment is emphasised by providing visitors with guidelines to ensure sustainable practices are observed while staying in our marina.

We encourage all visitors to be aware of their impact on the surrounding marine environment and also to make educated decisions whilst enjoying the cruising grounds of the Whitsundays Marine Park.

The Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority supplies a range of resources to all visitors of the Whitsundays. This information encourages sustainable boating practices, the protection of native flora and fauna and the limiting of environmental impacts from tourism operations in the region.

Environmental Management

Located in the heart of the world heritage listed Great Barrier Reef Marine Park and as the largest inhabited island in the Whitsundays, Hamilton Island is committed to ensuring we are continually working to reduce our environmental footprint. In conjunction with our land based public area attendants, our marina team conduct daily on-water checks to remove all waste and debris that has found its way into the marina waterways.

We work with facilities located in Mackay to recycle co-mingled waste produced on the island where we collect and bale over 1 tonne per day. Over 400t of cardboard is separated from co-mingled recycling and is packed and sent on to Brisbane for reprocessing.

We also have introduced a process for recycling electronic items such as TVs and computers. These have been diverted from landfill and are being recycled on the mainland for precious metals. We are averaging 1t per month.

Hamilton Island Environment and Sustainability Actions cover several key environmental initiatives:

  • Reduction, Reuse and Recycle general waste.
  • Doing away with single use plastic straws, cutlery and food containers.
  • Reducing our overall energy and water consumption.
  • Reduced the number of plastic water bottles purchased.
  • Sewage Treatment Facility converting effluent to liquid Grey Water.
  • Liquid Food Waste Composter converting food waste to liquid Grey Water.
  • Reuse 95% of all Grey Water produced.

Hamilton Island Marina conducts daily operations in line with our Environmental Goals, which are:

  • Reduce waste and reuse/recycle where possible.
  • Minimise pollution from the effects of marina activities on air, land and water.
  • Reduce energy, water and waste consumption across marina operations.
  • Educate customers, employees and contractors on conservation of marine ecosystems and marine life.
  • Promote activities, which reduce marine habitat disturbance, protect native flora and fauna and encourage sustainable boating practices.
  • Replacement of toxic boat cleaning chemicals with environmentally friendly alternatives.

Our Marina Rules outline a set of Environmental Guidelines that apply to marina guests, employees and contractors. These rules include information relating to the following Sustainable Actions:

  • Advocate Sustainable marine based operations, vessel maintenance and repair practices.
  • Provide filtered water stations for bottle re-fill, to reduce single use plastic water bottles.
  • Plastic Bag free policy throughout all outlets.
  • Fishing, cleaning of fish and disposing of fish waste within the Marina are prohibited.