Racing with Purpose

Our ocean is in crisis. We want to be a catalyst for change by accelerating the protection and restoration of our seas. Discover what The Ocean Race is doing here.


© Sailing Energy / The Ocean Race

Nature has been integral to The Ocean Race since we first set sail in 1973. It's at the heart of what we do - the race track that we compete on and the wind that powers our boats - but it is deteriorating fast.

We're seeing firsthand the devastating impact of pollution, climate change and industrial overfishing on our ocean. At the same time we have a greater understanding of how important our seas are, not just to the sport we love, but in regulating our climate and providing us with food, jobs and the air we breathe.

It's time to act, which is why we are harnessing the determination and ambition of our round-the-world race and the unifying power of sport, to expand the conversation around ocean health and drive change. We are Racing with Purpose, working with 11th Hour Racing, Premier Partner of The Ocean Race and Founding Partner of our sustainability programme, and many others to go far beyond just being a responsible sports event organiser (though we are that too... find out more here).

We are in a decade of action, where there needs to be major changes to how we treat the planet, if we are to reach critical targets by 2030. At The Ocean Race we believe that we have the platform to educate, inspire and accelerate action for our blue planet at this critical time in history.

Our focus

Climate and Ocean

Focusing on climate change and its connection to the ocean, we are spotlighting solutions to reduce the effects of climate change on the ocean, and the role of the ocean as a climate hero through solutions such as blue carbon.

We support the global goals of halving GHGs by 2030, becoming net zero by 2040 and keeping warming below 1.5 degrees celsius. Read more.


Ocean Protection

© Sailing Energy/The Ocean Race

We advocate for policy, commitments and action on ocean protection and effective governance.

This includes marine protected areas and governing the high seas, action on plastic pollution prevention, and a just and sustainable fishing industry.  


Ocean Rights

© Ainhoa Sanchez/The Ocean Race

We are providing a platform and convening experts from across the world, including policy makers, businesses, NGOs, scientists, sailors and ocean advocates, to explore nature-based and ocean rights.

We are working towards the inherent rights of the ocean being recognised at all levels from policy to action. 

Our approach


© Rosalin Kuiper/Akzonobel Ocean Racing

Our onboard Science programme gathers vital ocean data; climate change impacts and microplastic, from the most remote parts of the planet.  




© Ainhoa Sanchez/Volvo Ocean Race

Our Champions for the Sea Learning programme gives children an understanding of the issues affecting our marine world and how they can help.  




© Pedro Martinez/Volvo AB

The Ocean Race Summits are high-level events that aim to drive new and improved policies to tackle some of the most urgent issues facing our blue planet. 



Sustainable Sport

© Ainhoa Sanchez/Volvo AB

We strive to be a leader in sports, events and sustainability - testing new ways to produce our Race with maximum positive impact.  Find out more here.





© Cherie Bridges / The Ocean Race

Relay4Nature aims to give the ocean a voice on the critical issues affecting our planet at the landmark events where decisions are made about the environment. Nature’s Baton, the symbol of Relay4Nature, travels to landmark ocean, biodiversity and climate events where world leaders are discussing the future of the planet. Along the way, passionate ocean advocates are taking the baton and sharing their personal messages for world leaders, both as written messages and filmed interviews. Between the global decision-making moments, Relay4Nature is also visiting other key conferences and events, making its way between them with zero carbon emissions. 

It takes a team

© Sailing Energy/The Ocean Race


© Sailing Energy/The Ocean Race

Our teams and sailors are in the race for the ocean with us, as passionate ocean guardians and witnesses to impacts on our unseen ocean.

The teams are committed to racing as sustainably as possible in their logistics, operations and hospitality programmes.



© Ainhoa Sanchez / Volvo Ocean Race

We engage our host cities to take action for the ocean and they use The Ocean Race as a platform for enhanced commitments and action on climate, ocean protection and plastic pollution.

Our stopover partners employ the highest standards of sustainable sports events excellence in co-producing each stopover with us.



© Amory Ross/11th Hour Racing/The Ocean Race

Our partners bring their passion and commitment for a sustainable future for all.

Our 'Partnership with Purpose' programme enables every partner to bring a purpose-led programme to the Race, and to use it to inspire their customers, staff and stakeholders in join the race for the ocean.

How are we doing?

Our Sustainability Reports (2019-2020 and 2021) track our progress in meeting our sustainability ambitions. Highlights include transitioning the HQ in Alicante to 100% renewable energy, hosting Summits, sharing our Learning Programme with thousands of students, publishing industry guides on sustainable sports excellence, hosting industry innovation workshops, becoming maintain our commitment to drawing down more greenhouse gas emissions than we generate.

Click the links above to read the reports. To find out how we fared during our last round-the-world Race, check out the Sustainability Report for 2017-18.