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Old 07-05-2010, 08:49   #61
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Originally Posted by Puddlefish View Post
I'm always somewhat amused It's all too easy to be smug and say sailboats are greener than powerboats for instance, but in the big picture sailboat living is still a pretty wasteful lifestyle compared to the average person living in the world.
I'm not condemning anyone, just pointing out the need to be self aware. I can't say that I do my best, it's closer to balancing doing my best for the environment with living a comfortable lifestyle for myself and my family.
Please expand... a little illumination is always better than none at all... how many tons are surrounding you for example..
Lets face it most on here could live on smaller boats than 40+ ftrs.. they just choose not to.. but thats an economic choice..
Does it create as much pollution/usage of materials as the average 2/3 bed house on land..
I doubt it... for a start it doesn't stop drainage to maintain the water table...a 12/24 volt independent life style is more friendly than the 120/240 one and its achievable on land... if people wanted it.. but most could not care less.. or be bothered.
My little piece of portable plastic runs on 12v from a solar panel... what does your desk top run on... how many tv's have you and how big are they...
Would you fight to ban Neon advertising...??
Cars using more than 1 gall/40 miles illegalised..??
Cancel that last... you could lose the whole US car industry..
Hmmm thats a good idea....
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Old 07-05-2010, 08:57   #62
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Puddlefish, that seems like a broad statement. Surely it is consumption and use patterns that determine whether a lifestyle is wasteful, not vessel choice?
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Old 07-05-2010, 09:15   #63
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Maybe if we all stopped eating fish and drinking bottled water it would remove some of the pressure on our oceans.

I stopped eating fish about 10 years ago and stopped drinking bottled water about 5 years ago and stopped driving a car about 19 years ago.

I do a lot of walking and when I can't walk I take the bus. Cities are much more difficult to live in without a vehicle than they were in my youth but not impossible. Once in a long while I ask a friend for a ride if I need something that is to heavy to carry on the bus. That only happens a few times a year.

I say this not to be smug but to point out that it can be done.

But I'm not ready to give up my computer.
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Old 07-05-2010, 10:06   #64
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I'm not suggesting that my lifestyle is better or worse than anyone else's. But rather the fact that we're all discussing this on the internet shows that we're all somewhat more privileged than the average human on this planet.

I just can't be all that impressed by anyone who still believes that solar powered electricity for example is an environmentally friendly concept. When one factors in the cost of harvesting the raw materials from the earth, the manufacturing energy, equipment, the transportation costs, the usable life of the unit, the cost of disposal, the ancillary equipment (batteries, wires, etc.) then one should be able to conclude that a solar panel has not yet been invented that is more earth friendly over it's lifespan than "conventional" energy sources. Peruse Popular Mechanics for some supporting articles, it's a fun website.

I'm not saying solar isn't a good alternative for remote energy applications. I'm not saying that we shouldn't promote research into more efficient energy sources including solar.

The relative comparison from a motorboat, to a sailboat is within a few percentage points of each other, when compared to say a tribesman living off the land. I just find it amusing in a "pot calling the kettle black" kind of way.
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Old 07-05-2010, 10:09   #65
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You don't have to give up on fish, though it's a workable choice, but be selective. In Winnepeg you might choose a local fish from a fishery that hasn't collapsed and that has been harvested in a sustainable manner. I don't know the state of Manitoba's whitefish fishery but it might be a possibility. Avoid cheap imports and farm fish where the source of feed is uncertain. Really, avoid eating fish whose source is uncertain I guess. It is easier for me since I live on the ocean and harvest my own or support local fishermen. Logging practises have been very hard on the worlds waters and fish habitat, as have mining practises including petroleum. Now, we're seeing that carbon release patterns are affecting them as well, the consequence of global warming. The numbers have shown that the longer we wait to change the more draconian the measures will have to be. If everyone had half of your commitment DeepFrz we wouldn't be facing this situation.
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Old 07-05-2010, 10:29   #66
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... Avoid cheap imports and farm fish where the source of feed is uncertain. Really, avoid eating fish whose source is uncertain I guess ...
Indeed!

Thirty-four of 153 fish samples (22.2%) purchased by Marketplace (CBC TV program) were mislabeled.

Read more ➥ Something's Fishy | Marketplace

CBC News - Consumer Life - Mislabelling means rare fish sold: Marketplace

Lab Test Results | Marketplace

CBC News - Consumer Life - Mislabelling means rare fish sold: Marketplace
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Old 07-05-2010, 11:02   #67
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Quote:
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I just can't be all that impressed by anyone who still believes that solar powered electricity for example is an environmentally friendly concept. When one factors in the cost of harvesting the raw materials from the earth, the manufacturing energy, equipment, the transportation costs, the usable life of the unit, the cost of disposal, the ancillary equipment (batteries, wires, etc.) then one should be able to conclude that a solar panel has not yet been invented that is more earth friendly over it's lifespan than "conventional" energy sources.
Whilst I'm in no position, nor do I wish to challenge the solar panels versus oil based eco balance you are proposing, a solar-based model often entails an "island" concept (especially on boats), where all energy usage would be carefully monitored.

Aircon based living in badly isolated houses, which I was exposed to when we lived in the US in my childhood, would for instance not be feasible - and perhaps it just isn't necessary; later in life I spent stints much closer to the equator in Central America without any sort of air conditioning.
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Old 07-05-2010, 17:51   #68
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I'm always somewhat amused when someone typing on their disposable petrochemical device surrounded by several tons of processed products ripped from the earth tries to convince me to take the "high road" on any environmental issue.

I just try to keep an open mind, and try to pay attention to the big picture. It's important to know the difference between green and green washing. It's all too easy to be smug and say sailboats are greener than powerboats for instance, but in the big picture sailboat living is still a pretty wasteful lifestyle compared to the average person living in the world.
What you're saying is true, cruisers are living a wasteful lifestyle if you are considering every living human in a third world country. Would I say that the sailboat lifestyle is pretty wasteful when compared to the average person not living in a 3rd world country...no...and you would have a tough time making that claim.

Also, comparing anyone on this forums lifestyle to a monk is Tibet is silly at best. Part of understanding big picture recognizing the major cultural differences between pre and post industrial societies.

Ergo, sailors do have the right to be a little smug. Compared to the rest of us not in a 3rd world country, they have a radically different lifestyle that is better for the environment. They have earned some bragging rights.

Quote:
I just can't be all that impressed by anyone who still believes that solar powered electricity for example is an environmentally friendly concept. When one factors in the cost of harvesting the raw materials from the earth, the manufacturing energy, equipment, the transportation costs, the usable life of the unit, the cost of disposal, the ancillary equipment (batteries, wires, etc.) then one should be able to conclude that a solar panel has not yet been invented that is more earth friendly over it's lifespan than "conventional" energy sources. Peruse Popular Mechanics for some supporting articles, it's a fun website.

I'm not saying solar isn't a good alternative for remote energy applications. I'm not saying that we shouldn't promote research into more efficient energy sources including solar.

The relative comparison from a motorboat, to a sailboat is within a few percentage points of each other, when compared to say a tribesman living off the land. I just find it amusing in a "pot calling the kettle black" kind of way.
Again, sort of a meaningless comparison.

Sailboats are significantly greener than power boats and setting the baseline as a tribesman living off the land is absurd.

Most importantly, I feel again you're missing the big picture. What you say about solar panels is true, and it's true because they are inefficient at energy conversion and use cadmium (which is the devil environmentally). What you are ignoring is that the cruising lifestyle uses significantly less generated power overall (by any means) than you average landlubber in a modern country. Also, if they have a wind generator then...well...yea they win, because I hope you can agree that they are greener than "conventional" power.
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Old 07-05-2010, 19:50   #69
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Would I say that the sailboat lifestyle is pretty wasteful when compared to the average person not living in a 3rd world country...no...and you would have a tough time making that claim.
I guess that's why I never even attempted that claim.

Quote:
Also, comparing anyone on this forums lifestyle to a monk is Tibet is silly at best. Part of understanding big picture recognizing the major cultural differences between pre and post industrial societies.
I don't recall bringing up a monk comparison, please don't attribute this to me.

You have the right to be smug, I have the right to be amused by your smugness.

But still you seem to be missing my point.

Picture, for convenience's sake, everyone fitting onto a scale from 1 to 100. 1 being the tribesman living off the land, 100 being some billionaire with an estate, jets, yachts and every other form of polluting device possible. Let's say the average sailboat owner rates a 60 and the average powerboat owner ranks a 70. I find it laughable that the sailboat owner is smug for being marginally better than the powerboat owner. Again, the 1 is simply a baseline, the comparison is between the 60 and the 70. It's not silly to have a baseline when one is looking at the big picture.

In case anyone is still missing my point, I'm think it's great if someone wants to try to
conserve. I find it pathetic when someone who's living marginally different from me gets all smug about it. I find it humorous when they use bad science green washing to try to exert their superiority over the people who are living a similar lifestyle on the grand scale of things. (This is why I used solar electric as an example and not wind)

I further believe that every person (regardless of whether or not they live in an industrial nation) should have the right (in the very loose sense of the word) to pursue better conditions for themselves, even at the expense of the environment. All I'm preaching is that we at least be honest with ourselves about the impact that we each have on the environment. It doesn't make us bad people, it just makes us realists instead of hypocrites.
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Old 07-05-2010, 20:25   #70
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Originally Posted by Puddlefish View Post
I guess that's why I never even attempted that claim.
I find it pathetic when someone who's living marginally different from me gets all smug about it. I find it humorous when they use bad science green washing to try to exert their superiority over the people who are living a similar lifestyle on the grand scale of things. (This is why I used solar electric as an example and not wind)

I further believe that every person (regardless of whether or not they live in an industrial nation) should have the right (in the very loose sense of the word) to pursue better conditions for themselves, even at the expense of the environment. All I'm preaching is that we at least be honest with ourselves about the impact that we each have on the environment. It doesn't make us bad people, it just makes us realists instead of hypocrites.
I suppose I am living marginally differently from you...
Its 32 yrs old, 21ft long, 7ft wide and has 4ft6 headroom inside.. a 20W solar panel is my choice.. as a 7ft+ stainless pole for a wind generator at the stern is not only unsightly on a small boat, it gets in the way.
2 x 12 volt batteries for my auto pilot, cabin/nav lights, vhf, and for charging phones, lap top and my electric drill.
4HP Outboard for entry/departure purposes.
Butane cooker.
I walk or use public transport, use a train rather than fly whenever possible.. I could claim anti ozone abuse reasons but... the reality is I dislike flying.
I don't think I'm being smug.. I think I'm quite a realist actually.. but then one mans reality is another mans hell...
As for you having the right to live to your standards that is undeniable...

Jeez... I can't criticise, I'm aspiring to a 1972 26ftr some time... I'll really start to feel guilty then...
Thats not smugness.. its called sarcsam
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Old 07-05-2010, 21:30   #71
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Oh... by the way.. your rating system sucks...
A 45ft powerboat used 600+ galls of fuel from Baiona to Fig da Foz then had to pull in to refuel again for the next couple of hundred miles...
The equivalent sailboat would use at most 2... and with no wind... around 40/50galls... a 40/60hp engine is a lot smaller/cheaper in materials/production than what they stick in a 45ft twin screw PB..
Thats a hellva wide 10%..

Power boat owners, as the man says.. Its your right and choice.. I'm not having a go.
My only gripe about you is if you throw me about in your wake when you pass to close...
I understand and appreciate the power, space and comfort..
I've lived and worked on them.. but if I could afford one and had the money to run it... ??
I would still opt for the stick and rag... its really a pyschological form of casting off another limitation and reliance..
and the loose change would pay for a coupla years luxury cruising.....
By my Standards....
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Old 07-05-2010, 21:43   #72
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I further believe that every person (regardless of whether or not they live in an industrial nation) should have the right (in the very loose sense of the word) to pursue better conditions for themselves, even at the expense of the environment. All I'm preaching is that we at least be honest with ourselves about the impact that we each have on the environment. It doesn't make us bad people, it just makes us realists instead of hypocrites.
So I guess this means corporations as well. "Even at the expense of the environment". I don't think that is realism, I think its "elitism".

Reminds me of a time while canoeing the Churchill River and we came upon bridge construction on a road to a uranium mine. There was a First Nations man filling a water truck. I egoistically said something like "hey, what are you guys doing to my wilderness?". He said something like "what do you mean your wilderness?".

Who's world is this anyway? Don't we all have to live here? Should someone just because of some good fortune or accident of birth be able to destroy OUR planet at their whim? Now scale that up to nations.
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Old 07-05-2010, 22:11   #73
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Of course my rating system sucks, it's pure myth and was created soley for demonstration purposes. It's only meant to be accurate in a wildly general way sufficient to illuminate my point (not to make my point.)

However to be fair, you have a 21 foot sailboat and you're comparing it to a 45' powerboat? Fuel use is also only one small facet of the impact on the planet.

By virtue of having a fiberglass boat (a very nasty manufacturing process, a small inefficient gasoline engine, disposable electronics and batteries chock full of nasty chemicals, presumably some sort of nasty bottom paint, and probably a host of other junk on board, you still fit into the same category as the rest of us reading this forum. Granted, you're probably among the greenest 5% of us, but still in the same general category. You are living the dream right now, I'd trade places with you right now if it were feasible.

I'm still in boat selection mode, and have been looking at used boats ranging between the 20' Flicka and numerous 34's. Will any boat I choose be significantly better for the environment? Probably not, I'm limited by economics, single handed set ups, and general seaworthiness.

It's really common and very easy for people to draw a line in the sand and decide who is wasteful, and who is frugal. Much like that old joke "Anyone who drives slower than me is an idiot, and everyone who drives faster than me is a maniac."
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Old 07-05-2010, 22:17   #74
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I'm past being outraged. I'm seriously hoping that Mother Nature takes a hand in drasticly reducing the population of this planet. Down to 500 million would be nice but I'll settle for 1 billion. We as a species honestly don't deserve to live anymore. No matter what anyone does to remedy the problems, some other greedy SOB will go out of his or her way to make sure that they get theirs regardless of the cost to anyone else.

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Old 07-05-2010, 22:23   #75
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I guess that's why I never even attempted that claim.



I don't recall bringing up a monk comparison, please don't attribute this to me.

You have the right to be smug, I have the right to be amused by your smugness.

But still you seem to be missing my point.

Picture, for convenience's sake, everyone fitting onto a scale from 1 to 100. 1 being the tribesman living off the land, 100 being some billionaire with an estate, jets, yachts and every other form of polluting device possible. Let's say the average sailboat owner rates a 60 and the average powerboat owner ranks a 70. I find it laughable that the sailboat owner is smug for being marginally better than the powerboat owner. Again, the 1 is simply a baseline, the comparison is between the 60 and the 70. It's not silly to have a baseline when one is looking at the big picture.

In case anyone is still missing my point, I'm think it's great if someone wants to try to
conserve. I find it pathetic when someone who's living marginally different from me gets all smug about it. I find it humorous when they use bad science green washing to try to exert their superiority over the people who are living a similar lifestyle on the grand scale of things. (This is why I used solar electric as an example and not wind)

I further believe that every person (regardless of whether or not they live in an industrial nation) should have the right (in the very loose sense of the word) to pursue better conditions for themselves, even at the expense of the environment. All I'm preaching is that we at least be honest with ourselves about the impact that we each have on the environment. It doesn't make us bad people, it just makes us realists instead of hypocrites.
I don't think you grasped the gist of my post earlier. I you didn't say literally that you compared us to people from a 3rd world country or a monk from Tibet...but that's clearly what you're thinking. It is also what your scale of convenience from 1-100 implies. I could pick any person who has zero environmental impact and trade it for your base value.

Truthfully, the difference in lifestyle of people from the modern world has about as much to do with tribal people living off the land as it does to the lifestyle of a single bacteria living at the bottom of the pacific. It is strange that you feel comfortable completely ignoring the sociological side of this.

I suppose to try and relate this to you...say you play some adult league softball with your team and about 400 local people on different teams. Say you are the definitively best player in the whole league. If I were to ask you if you were good at that sport, you would say "of course, I'm the best in my league" and then if I were thinking like you I'd respond like this: Actually, I'm amused you're being so smug. For convenience sake lets put everyone on a scale from 1-100. Stephen Hawking is 1 and the best player who ever lived and ever will live is 100. You, the best guy in the league are about a 70, the worst guy in your league is a 60. I think it's funny that you talk about being good when there is really only a marginal difference between the both of you.
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