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Old 01-02-2016, 11:21   #31
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Re: Tread Lightly - Is cruising still an alternative eco-freindly lifestyle?

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Originally Posted by a64pilot View Post
You know, if your the type that wants to , you could live on a boat with very little environmental impact.
Build a wooden boat, no plastic, cotton sails, hemp lines, heck even a big rock for an anchor. No motor, beeswax candles, it could be done I think with very little impact?
It's do-able, just I chose not to, and I love the Earth as much as anyone. . . .. . . . .
You would still be having a significant negative impact on delicate coastal environments.

But a wooden boat with cotton sails and hemp ropes could be a beautiful thing, and would have far less impact than our plastic boats. Sculling oar instead of an engine. Composting toilet, 100% solar power . . . So a genuinely green boat.

Maybe a business opportunity there for you, A64 . . . .
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Old 01-02-2016, 11:35   #32
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Re: Tread Lightly - Is cruising still an alternative eco-freindly lifestyle?

I cruise for the enjoyment and to visit places. Any eco street cred, is just a bonus. I would be willing to bet the vast majority from 40-50yrs ago felt similarly but they didn't have access to all the great stuff we have now.

I had a prius nut go off on me when pulled into a parking lot in my V10 F250. I then proceeded to prove to him how I use less fossil fuel by a long shot than he did...but it's not because I want eco street cred. It just happens to be the lifestyle I want to live.
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Old 01-02-2016, 11:43   #33
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Re: Tread Lightly - Is cruising still an alternative eco-freindly lifestyle?

I bet that a wooden boat, cotton sails, etc. etc. is no where near as environmentally green as people wish to believe.
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Old 01-02-2016, 12:33   #34
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Re: Tread Lightly - Is cruising still an alternative eco-freindly lifestyle?

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Originally Posted by a64pilot View Post
You know, if your the type that wants to , you could live on a boat with very little environmental impact.
Build a wooden boat, no plastic, cotton sails, hemp lines, heck even a big rock for an anchor. No motor, beeswax candles, it could be done I think with very little impact?
It's do-able, just I chose not to, and I love the Earth as much as anyone.

Now the ones I dislike are the ones who make money out of selling "green", when they are not. Remind me too much of Televangelists
Absolutely spot on.

The 'Green' fanatics are as bad as the Animal 'Rights' extremists that don't care a fig about animals, it's all this 'wear your heart on your sleeve' nonsense oozing disgustingly from posing pseuds that only care what their small circle of sad so called 'friends' think of them (people that all too frequently will stab each other in the back at the first opportunity).

I say that as somebody that's lived off grid since 1980. In the years since, the fanatical lunatics have taken over the asylum (look what the original Greenpeace people have to say about them). They aren't just stark raving bonkers, they are wrong, and they despise humanity while they are at it, and hate themselves even more than they hate everybody else.

Along the way I've also designed timber frame houses that achieve 95% of the benefits for 5% of the costs, of the Canadian R2000 standard, but can you sell these people anything that actually works, for a fair price? Nahhh it's all about the scam and the fraud.

I went to the Homeworld '81 Exhibition in Milton Keynes, at a time when I was offered a standard new 3 bedroom house there, for £20,000 (and it wasn't even worth £20,000). The 'Exhibition' was a showcase for alternative energy and energy efficient housing, and the vast majority was trash with a couple of grand of add ons with a 'Green' label stuck on it, for a price increase to at least £140,000 more (£160,000 and up), for something that couldn't even work. The best thing there was a New Zealand timber house that was beautifully made, and excellent value (a kit delivered to you door was about £7,000 then, and you could make it really energy efficient - I don't think they sold even one).

I used to visit the alternative technology centre at Machynlleth regularly, just for the giggles. Deluded incompetent fools that barely had the skill to tie their shoe laces, relying on industry to donate 'good stuff' free of charge to show it off to visitors (that's how it was once the original people - like with Greenpeace and so many other organisations - had a gutful of the truly deranged and fanatic late arrivers, so they walked).

Want to know what the priority purchases for my boat are when I get it?

A steam cleaner to kill molds and spores, as well as keep things hygienic in hot climates;
A dehumidifier to keep molds and spores down;
A Berkey Imperial fully loaded with filters so I can a) make the distillation from the dehumidifier into drinking water, and as it will filter about 16 gallons an hour, I can make drinking water anywhere there's a stream or waterfall, and fill my tanks within about 5 hours.

Frankly, from what I have seen of 'Eco this' and 'Green that' in the past 40 years or so, the lot of them can suck my rusty can opener. They have no concept of proportion or scale, no comprehension of the true scale of humanity on this Planet (it isn't nearly as large as they scare themselves into thinking), and just can't grasp that whatever we do as a species, isn't even an ink blot of relevance on the face of eternity.

I wish they would just shut up with their nonsense and go away, and stop frightening the children.

As George Orwell said in "All Art is Propaganda: Critical Essays":

“But the trouble is that conscious futility is something only for the young. One cannot go on "despairing of life" in to a ripe old age. One cannot go on being "decadent", since decadence means falling and one can only be said to be falling if one is going to reach the bottom reasonably soon. Sooner or later one is obliged to adopt a positive attitude toward life and society.”

These idiots are mostly over the age of 25, yet most of them STILL haven't got a brain.
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Old 01-02-2016, 12:49   #35
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Re: Tread Lightly - Is cruising still an alternative eco-freindly lifestyle?

Pioneers of cruising in the 50's, 60's and 70's?? Why start it in the 50's? When did the polynesians decide to go cruising in open canoes?

As for those in the 50's, how many of them carried cigarettes as a necessity? Most? And if they were presented with the opportunity to make fresh water from sea water or navigate 24 hours a day with a display that could even come from a chip in a digital camera....I believe they would have. Black and white televisions were the latest craze in electronics, but not that useful on boats. I suspect sailors and cruisers have grabbed useful technology as soon as it was economically feasible and available since the adze was invented for hollowing out logs.

Or do you think two old timers standing there in their loin cloths looked at a guy swinging an axe at a log and said to each other " Back in MY day, men hollowed out their logs with fire, none of this new fangled steel implement stuff."

Or lets take it back further. How about " Back in MY day, real boaters held on to a log and floated in the water alongside it. One with the ocean. None of this lashing stuff together to stay on top, out of touch with the wate. This new "rope" technology is ruining cruising....
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Old 01-02-2016, 12:57   #36
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Re: Tread Lightly - Is cruising still an alternative eco-freindly lifestyle?

The real start of boating technology was when some monkey learned he could tie TWO coconuts together. He left those single coconut apes to coastal cruise while he hit the high bluewaters.
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Old 01-02-2016, 13:17   #37
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Re: Tread Lightly - Is cruising still an alternative eco-freindly lifestyle?

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Maybe a business opportunity there for you, A64 . . . .

Wait a minute, I never said I wanted one of the things, I like and want my comforts, but you don't have to be the type that pours your oil overboard when you change it either
There exists I believe a middle ground, my belief is a sailing boat anyway is a greener form of transportation and living quarters than most things.
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Old 01-02-2016, 13:18   #38
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Re: Tread Lightly - Is cruising still an alternative eco-freindly lifestyle?

It must depend on where your vantage point is.

Where we are (EU shores) there are still loads of people doing things in all sorts of tubs: from a folkboat to a maximaxi.

Now the big question is: when weighted with their displacement, is one maximaxi yacht more, or less, eco-friendly than one thousand folkboats?

I think back in the Hiscocks' times world sailing was available for the few who had the money and the right passport (and the right skills, too). Today oceans are crossed by all kinds of people from all sorts of countries, with less, or none skills.

But what looks like a new found eco friendly alternative lifestyle boils down to hundreds of 'sea gypsies' pissing in the marina, doing their laundry on the docks and doing their "friendly" things because the doing party is not made pay the attached costs. In a way, most of their "eco-friendly" footprint is simply paid by others.

I see this situation as a plus. I don't like the 'yachtsmen' culture where you either belong to or else non-exist. I like to see people doing things, chasing their dreams, failing, trying ....

Cruising has never been an eco friendly alternative lifestyle. It is just another myth. It is all about being on the fringes of a major consumption-driven culture, and it is possible only while the major culture is out there. When our civilisation tumbles and falls, cruising will be gone long before all other, non eco-friendly, pastimes become obliterate.

So, my short answer is: it has never been. The long of it is: and thanks gods.

b.
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Old 01-02-2016, 13:20   #39
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Re: Tread Lightly - Is cruising still an alternative eco-freindly lifestyle?

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I had a prius nut go off on me when pulled into a parking lot in my V10 F250. I then proceeded to prove to him how I use less fossil fuel by a long shot than he did...
I have both, well a Dually Duramax 1 Ton and a Prius, so I don't have the typical Prius Smugness.
But how do you use less fossil fuel, do you push the thing, sails?
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Old 01-02-2016, 13:23   #40
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Re: Tread Lightly - Is cruising still an alternative eco-freindly lifestyle?

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Wait a minute, I never said I wanted one of the things, I like and want my comforts, but you don't have to be the type that pours your oil overboard when you change it either
Well an oil dripper can be a huge aid to safety in extreme weather.

Remember the expression "Pouring oil on troubled waters"?
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Old 01-02-2016, 13:45   #41
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Re: Tread Lightly - Is cruising still an alternative eco-freindly lifestyle?

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Watermakers are simply nonsense if you will live on the hook which obviously will be close to the coast where you can get water to top up your fresh water tanks, yes physical work! If you shy from physical work dont go live on the hook. Back to my watermaker comment, who can use his watermaker close to the coast, where water has ots of polluants. A watermaker to me is usefull for serious passagemaking like in the pacific, you have tonbe out in open non-polluted water to operate it. The power needed to operate watermaker, along refrigeration, electronics, autopilot.... will force you to get larger capacity battery banks,higher charging capacity, not mentioning the pickling the intensive maintenance.
It depends on your definitions, and where you cruise.

If by "on the hook" you mean simply anchoring near some town and staying there, basically the same as in a marina, but cheaper, then sure.

But we live "on the hook" and wouldn't be without our watermaker.

We don't do many "serious" passages, lately just cruising the Australian coast, but the water here is pretty much free from pollution, and often, land based sources of water are a long way away.

Maintenance of our watermaker has been simple and cheap. Routine oil changes, prefilter changes as needed.... not much at all. I don't mention pickling, because we've never done it. Keep using the thing and it doesn't need pickling.

Our solar panels produce more than ample power to run the watermaker to meet our requirements, including doing the laundry every week or so.

To me that's really "off the grid" living. We can stay away from towns, marinas, water mains etc for months at a time if we wish to.
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Old 01-02-2016, 13:52   #42
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Re: Tread Lightly - Is cruising still an alternative eco-freindly lifestyle?

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I always read what this guy writes on the environment -- he always has an interesting perspective, with an unusually high level of intelligence , on a subject where most of what one reads is full of sound and fury, but lacking in much of anything in the way of serious thought.



To the OP: In my opinion, you are kidding yourself if you think that any kind of cruising is really an "eco friendly" way of life. You might use marginally less fossil fuel energy than you would use living on land (or not), but almost all human activity which takes place around shorelines has got to have a high impact. Construction and maintenance of marinas, for example, must be incredibly destructive of delicate coastal habitats; anchoring destroys sea grass; etc. Building cruising boats involves a large expenditure of resources which are wasted more than those spent on house construction, because boats depreciate and get scrapped much sooner than houses do.

If you want to have a REALLY low environmental impact, live in a one-room apartment in an ultra-green high-rise building (to use up as little land as possible) in Denmark (where nearly all energy is renewable), and ride a bicycle to work. And forget about cruising. Or better yet, just kill yourself.
Every living thing has an impact on the environment. How do we tell if it's negative or not? A dugong (manatee) harms the seagrass when it eats it. Crown of thorn starfish damage coral reefs. Beavers cut down trees, and cause flooding, predators kill prey, sometimes to or even beyond, the point of extinction....
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Old 01-02-2016, 15:51   #43
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pirate Re: Tread Lightly - Is cruising still an alternative eco-freindly lifestyle?

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I have to clarify the last point; schlepping water is not always a mission but other times it can be very, very challenging.
Yet, other times having a water maker can transform your life and comfort. We have spent a considerable time in the Indian Ocean and many places potable water is not available, at any price. In other places we have had to carry it in 20 litre cans over a considerable distance and across soft sand (could not use trolley/cart). If carrying >40kgs for several km's through soft sand, loading it into your dinghy and then walking back to the tap and repeating, until your cans are all full and then using the tender to transport the lot back to the mother vessel, pouring the lot into your tanks and then repeating until the tanks are full - this is not a schlep........!!! Hmmmm. ....not to mention the need to do washing of bedding and clothes.

Good Stuff!!
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Old 01-02-2016, 16:10   #44
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Re: Tread Lightly - Is cruising still an alternative eco-freindly lifestyle?

We always ran our watermakers 24/7, even at dock side, had a/c(perfect when running up the suez), ran ice maker, freezer, ice cream machine, and a frig. Many times had the typical aesthetic Americans go joyous over getting a bag of ice or a quart of ice cream while they tried to do the world in a bare essential sailboat. We also had hot showers and cold drinks. No one ever got boils nor body rot. Important when you have two kids on board. So screw the footprint stuff. One big volcano will produce more exhaust than one billion people. One war about the same. We are truly tiny creatures, and as long as we do not go out of our way to pollute or kill, then its all good. We used the same boat for almost 40 years and seldom needed a car. You live on way less when you are sailing, regardless of your boat's size.
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Old 01-02-2016, 16:31   #45
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Re: Tread Lightly - Is cruising still an alternative eco-freindly lifestyle?

My wife and i have no interest in camping. We do however minimize our impact on the planet.

Its a tradeoff between complexity and convenience. Im an engineer so im quite happy having complex systems that provide a high level of convenience.

We treasure nights on the hook surrounded by nature.

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