• Electric boat sales are gradually rising like a tide, according to Carbon Yachts
  • These vessels could have an increasing part to play in emissions reduction in coming years
  • Lower running costs and less maintenance are also said to be positive factors


Special Report: Electric boat businesses such as Carbon Yachts have strong belief in the future of the sector, based on an observed uptick in sales, the overarching EV demand narrative and potential to significantly help reduce emissions.

If the popularity of electric boats continues to grow, they’ll likely have an increasing role to play in reducing global emissions, much like their automotive counterparts on land.

Maritime transport accounts for approximately 2-3% of global CO₂ emissions and adopting electric boats presents a promising solution to reduce this environmental footprint.

And, while electric land vehicles have steadily gained market share, the boating industry could be on the verge of experiencing a similar transformation.

While it’s the case that electric boats represent a very small fraction of the global fleet of boats at present, there are some expectations floating about that this could change dramatically in coming years.

According to industry data gathered by Market Research Future, the global electric boat market could more than double by the end of this decade, driven by technological advancements, infrastructure, and a growing demand for sustainable alternatives. This could see it grow from a total valuation of US$5.1 billion (estimated in 2022) to US$10.7 billion by 2030.


Why choose an electric boat?

When thinking about electric boats from an energy transition perspective, the potential benefits over traditional diesel-powered vessels seem pretty clear.

Electric vessels certainly eliminate the fumes of diesel engines, making them a likely far more attractive option for eco-conscious consumers than traditional offerings.

But there are other factors at play beyond emissions reduction, too.

Electric boat companies such as Australia’s Carbon Yachts also tout lower running costs, reduced maintenance, and a quieter boating experience across the board for those seeking a more serene time on the water.


A potential ripple effect forming

In the event a surge in electric boat sales occurs in line, relatively speaking, with widely predicted increasing electric road vehicle uptake, then this could help to create positive ripple effects across various sectors – from battery metals such as lithium, to importers of the vessels themselves.

Despite a recent softening in lithium prices, the long-term outlook in that mining sub-sector remains strong according to the industry’s true believers such as big-gun ASX companies Mineral Resources, Pilbara Minerals and Patriot Battery Metals.

And demand for electric vehicles in general is expected to continue its robust growth this year, noted the International Energy Agency in April, predicting sales of EVs to surge to one in five in 2024. The IAE has also previously predicted that EVs will represent more than 60% of vehicles sold globally by 2030

If that occurs, it’s not unreasonable to expect sales in the boating industry to follow a similarly electric-focused path.


‘As pristine as boating gets’

In Australia, electric boat businesses including Carbon Yachts have been reporting momentum in the sector.

The company’s co-founder Chris Hrones said he has observed a “noticeable uptick” in adoption over the past 36 months.

“Five years ago, Sydney Harbour was home to a handful of electric boats,” said Hrones. “Today, that number has swelled into the hundreds.”

Mary Bickley, Carbon Yachts’ National Sales Manager, meanwhile explained that interest is growing among eco-conscious individuals and existing boat owners seeking quieter, cheaper, and lower-maintenance alternatives.

“Until now, eco-friendly individuals lacked a viable alternative to petrol-powered speed boats,” said Bickley, adding:

“But with advancements in technology, the gap is rapidly closing. Gliding across the water with no engine sounds or fumes is as pristine as boating gets.”

Carbon Yachts will be showcasing its wares in this emerging market, including the Swedish-built Candela C-8, at the upcoming Sydney International Boat Show on August 1-4.


This article was developed in collaboration with Carbon Yachts, a Stockhead advertiser at the time of publishing.


This article does not constitute financial product advice. You should consider obtaining independent advice before making any financial decisions.