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Old 03-04-2011, 12:55   #1
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Environmental / Sustainable Sailors Wanted !

Hi,

I work for a marina in Nova Scotia. I write the newsletter that we put out quarterly, and since Earth Day is coming up I wanted to write an all-green edition. I'm doing some research on "green" sailing, but being relatively new to the sailing scene, I don't know much about it. Any links to blogs by people who are actively pursuing a sustainable sailing lifestyle - or any other info on the topic - would be awesome!

Thanks.
-Leah
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Old 03-04-2011, 13:31   #2
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Re: Environmental/sustainable sailors wanted!

Welcome to the forum Leah. There have been some threads on the subject from time to time. There are a choice of search utilities at the top of the page that may help you find something.
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Old 03-04-2011, 13:44   #3
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Re: Environmental/sustainable sailors wanted!

Check out the organization, Sailors for the Sea, at sailorsforthesea.org

Also, the Cruising Club of America has some information about sailing and the environment on their website, at cruisingclub.org

And the Seven Seas Cruising Association promotes leaving a clean wake, at ssca.org
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Old 06-04-2011, 06:41   #4
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Re: Environmental/Sustainable Sailors Wanted!

Quote:
Originally Posted by huminbean View Post
Hi,
I work for a marina in Nova Scotia. I write the newsletter that we put out quarterly, and since Earth Day is coming up I wanted to write an all-green edition. I'm doing some research on "green" sailing, but being relatively new to the sailing scene, I don't know much about it. Any links to blogs by people who are actively pursuing a sustainable sailing lifestyle - or any other info on the topic - would be awesome!
Thanks. -Leah
I think you will find that virtually all cruisers are about as "green" as is possible. But being "sustainable" (I think you mean "self-sustainable) is neither realistic nor possible.
- - As with any sailing endeavor you have to first get the boat which is made of less than environmentally friendly materials and processes. Then you have operate the boat which means hydrocarbon fuels and oils and their associated pollution and waste products. Then you have a lot of systems that must be maintained and replaced with time and use. All of which imposes an environmental stress load.
- - By nature and temperament cruisers are environmentally very aware people. We love unspoiled beaches, islands and areas and try to leave a "clean wake" which means minimizing excess packaging and trash disposal - probably because trash disposal costs money and valuable space on the boat. All in all, cruisers are more "attuned" to living with Nature rather than subduing or fighting it. But by simple existence cruisers impose a negative influence on the environment but maybe to a lesser degree than land-living people.
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Old 06-04-2011, 07:29   #5
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Re: Environmental/Sustainable Sailors Wanted!

Leah, I have practiced "treading lightly on the planet" all of my adult life, both in my land and sea lifestyles. Our boat is the smallest, most efficient that I could build, (suitable to our needs), and our electrical needs are totally solar powered, 95% of the time. If you look up my "past posts", there is a lot of "how to" information in there.

The orrigional concept that I started with almost 40 years ago of "Seasteading", is sadly no longer practical or possible.


We still enjoy cruising... we're just much more carefull about where we anchor or catch seafood, and don't expect to be food "self sufficient" in any long term way. We are also SUPER carefull when we dive on live coral. Now, more often than not, we "hunt" for photos.

The concepts of "Seasteading" that were put forward by Jim Brown & James Wharram decades ago, were in a different world. It was before the scales had reached the tipping point.

Thanks for your efforts in promoting "concious living", It is appreciated.

Mark
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Old 06-04-2011, 07:31   #6
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Re: Environmental/Sustainable Sailors Wanted!

Greetings and welcome aboard the CF, Leah.
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Old 06-04-2011, 07:33   #7
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Re: Environmental/Sustainable Sailors Wanted!

Most cruisers I have seen do not give a damn about the environment. To put my statement in a perspective - they will claim they do but when you look at their actions and choices it is clear they are good at talking.

I do not have any links to share but I would like to read your report if a copy be available online one day.

If I come across a good link I will come back and post or PM you. Thanks for your work!

PS Perhaps PM Gord - he knows a lot of great links and things that went thru this forum.

b.
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Old 11-04-2011, 22:16   #8
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Wow....one more thing to think about before we venture out on the recently purchased sailboat. It hadn't even crossed my mind that I would not be able put my garbage out every Friday morning as I have for the last 25 years.

I can already see that joining this site was a good idea and will make the transition to this new way of living easier because I will have a better idea of what to expect.

Kari~
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Old 11-04-2011, 23:01   #9
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Re: Environmental/Sustainable Sailors Wanted!

Leah:

Back in 2008 I pulled out my Diesel engine and converted my boat to electric propulsion. Over 1,000 miles later I am so glad I did. I use solar and wind for charging along with a small Honda 2000 generator and grid electric if I happen to be tied up at a dock which is not to often. Mostly I am at anchor or on a mooring. Used a total of seven gallons of gas in six months and that includes using it in the outboard. Got the whole conversion process I took starting here:
THE BIANKA LOG BLOG: Going electric: Part 1: The why and how

Here's some video of me being happy at the helm sailing along and the boat making fuel (energy) at the same time
THE BIANKA LOG BLOG: HAPPY AT THE HELM!

I for one would never go back to diesel!
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Old 11-04-2011, 23:52   #10
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Re: Environmental/Sustainable Sailors Wanted!

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Originally Posted by barnakiel View Post
Most cruisers I have seen do not give a damn about the environment. To put my statement in a perspective - they will claim they do but when you look at their actions and choices it is clear they are good at talking.
I couldn't disagree more with the sentiment expressed above.

A growing number of cruisers take pride at how they've adopted lifestyles that reduce their carbon footprints while allowing them to literally travel the globe. For many of us, the first step was to sell/trade/give away tons and tons of "stuff" that kept us attached to our land bases, stuff that we could collect in houses/apartments/condos but not in sailboats. The next step was to simplify our lifestyles so that we no longer needed to be working long hours to pay for the stuff that we no longer needed to own or by which we thought we needed to be entertained. Finally, many of us have pursued alternative energies with which to care for our needs: solar, wind, sailpower, and the pure energy of doing it yourself.

While I'm still very much aware that my lifestyle isn't yet carbon-neutral, I am equally aware that I no longer stress the environment the way I did when I owned the home that I ultimately sold in order to purchase my first live-aboard sailboat. I use less fresh water per week than I used to use just to water my lawn. My energy bills are a fraction of what I used to pay just to heat my house. My lighting in the sailboat is primarily LED, and with 260 watts of solar power plus 200 watts of wind power, I can go a very long time without ever having to use fossil fuels to charge my batteries.

More to the point, I'm far more connected to my environment while aboard the boat than I ever was living in a house. I'm far more aware of the winds, the tides, the migrations of the birds, the messages written in the clouds, and my own methods of adapting from one season to the next. And the more I'm connected to my environment, the more I tend to be concerned about it.
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Old 18-04-2011, 08:22   #11
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Re: Environmental/Sustainable Sailors Wanted!

We just bought a new (to us ... it is 1966) boat and i took away most of the cleaning products left onboard by previous owners and replaced with Green/natural cleaning supplies:
Myers clean day soap for dishes & clothes
Bon Ami cleanser for scrubbing
Distilled venegar for head & mirror
Orange oil solvent for greasy dirt
All these cleaners work well and are natural/biodegradable.
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Old 18-04-2011, 08:30   #12
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Old 18-04-2011, 11:00   #13
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Re: Environmental/Sustainable Sailors Wanted!

Welcome aboard. Environmental education is needed and welcome.
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Old 18-04-2011, 16:44   #14
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Re: Environmental/Sustainable Sailors Wanted!

The "Greenest" sailors are those who don't leave shore. nor have a boat.

At the end of the day, recreational boat ownership (weekend or long distance / extended cruising) is a non essential hobby - and therefore no matter how much poop you store onboard ain't ever going to make up for the environmental impact of construction, use and disposal...........so any claims to "Green" are simply self serving feelgood delusions.

Not sh#tting on your own doorstep is another matter. and (in some cultures) is simply called common sense. and politeness. But, as always, YMMV.
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Old 19-04-2011, 07:44   #15
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Re: Environmental/Sustainable Sailors Wanted!

Hey y'all.... the OP was looking for blogs or info on Green Cruising... NOT political diatribes about who is destroying the planet or not. I edited out the politics so far in this thread, the next political statement will close it!
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