Emission Free Shipping

In the last couple of years people have started to notice a resurgence in sailing that has been quietly been gaining support and awareness. Not just any old recreational sailing though, but cargo carrying by sail. A return to the square riggers and clippers that, until the latter part of the industrial revolution, carried goods around the globe.

At the start of 2020, strict new maritime regulations have been introduced regarding the emissions of cargo ships. This will mean less sulphur emitted into the atmosphere, however the scrubbing systems that clean the exhaust do discharge waste water into the sea and there are disputes over how much marine pollution this causes. More info at Reuters.

Since 2007 a small Dutch company called Fair Transport have been transporting goods from the Caribbean to Europe. They specialise in carrying premium goods that are organic and/or fair trade, including coffee, rum and olive oil. In recent years they have added a wooden ketch, Nordlys, to transport goods around Europe.
Another, larger ship, is slowly taking shape in Costa Rica. Sail Cargo are building a 150ft schooner named Ceiba from sustainably harvested timber, that will trade between the Americas and the Caribbean.

You can see a video of the work on Ceiba and a tour of the shipyard below, with more films on YouTube.

All these companies are offering a carbon free alternative to the current system of fossil fuelled global trade, and the chance to get involved in their projects, either by working in the shipyard or travelling on the ships, see their websites for more details.

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