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Facts

In 1969 and 1970, the Norwegian adventurer and explorer Thor Heyerdahl crossed the Atlantic on the RA I and RA II papyrus rafts. While proving that a papyrus raft could have crossed the Atlantic in pre-Columbian times, Heyerdahl also made first hand observations of the world oceans becoming polluted.

He made reports to the UN and was asked by the UN Secretary-General to make daily pollution observations during the Ra II voyage. Hardened clumps of tar were collected on 43 days of the 57-day voyage. The reports were one of the elements forming the background to the international community's extensive efforts to improve the state of the ocean. This in turn led to the formation of the UN maritime sub-organisation International Maritime Organization (IMO).

Following the expedition, a book was published about the Ra expeditions, as well as a documentary film which was nominated for an Oscar. The voyage helped to raise awareness of the need to stop the pollution of the world’s seas. It also gave support to the work by IMO to protect the marine environment through binding international shipping regulation such as International Convention for the Prevention of Pollution from Ships, the MARPOL Convention, which was first adopted in 1973.

In accordance with increased knowledge of environmental problems and life in the oceans, IMO continues to develop new agreements and regulations for the purpose of further improving conditions of marine life.

Relaterte linker

Heyerdahl Award video

Heyerdahl award 2014

Heyerdahl award 2014
The Thor Heyerdahl International Maritime Environmental Award was launched in 1999 by Thor Heyerdahl (1914 – 2002) and the Norwegian Shipowners’ Association.

The prize recognizes candidates from the shipping industry that have made an outstanding contribution for the environment.

Eligible candidates are legal entities, organisations and individuals worldwide. Governement agenicies cannot receive the prize.

The next Heyerdahl-award will be awarded in 2016.

Previous winners

Previous winners

Rolls-Royce Marine was awarded the award for 2014. The expert committee, chaired by Secretary General of the International Chamber of Shipping (ICS), Peter Hinchliffe, says in its reasoning that Rolls-Royce has taken a holistic approach to vessel design and has succeeded in combining a number of innovative solutions that increase energy efficiency and contribute to significant reductions in emissions. The committee emphasized that the measures are adaptable for a broad range of ship types and thus have the potential to reduce emissions from many segments of the world fleet.

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Previous winners

Previous winners

Rolls-Royce Marine was awarded the award for 2014. The expert committee, chaired by Secretary Genera...

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The Expert Comittee

The Expert Comittee

The Heyerdahl Award is selected by the Expert Committee consisting of the following members:

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The Expert Comittee

The Expert Comittee

The Heyerdahl Award is selected by the Expert Committee consisting of the following members: ...

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Proposal Form

Proposal Form

We actively encourage members from academia, science, research institutes, governements, NGOs and the industry in general to nominate. Eligible candidates are legal entities, organisations and individuals worldwide. Governement agenicies cannot receive the prize.

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Proposal Form

Proposal Form

We actively encourage members from academia, science, research institutes, governements, NGOs and th...

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How to qualify

How to qualify

To qualify for the Award, candidates must have demonstrated exceptional technical innovation and environmental work in keeping with Thor Heyerdahl’s spirit for the future conservation of the marine environment.

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How to qualify

How to qualify

To qualify for the Award, candidates must have demonstrated exceptional technical innovation and env...

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