The bad news is that it's becoming increasingly clear how much trouble the oceans that we sailors cherish are in.
Sailing a clean ocean - something to strive for
One cannot deny the disturbing news of plastic out of control, acidification and over-fishing, just to name a few of the challenges.
The good news is that it is gratifying that several sailors' organisations are leading the charge, sometimes practically and sometimes intellectually, in the global effort to restore the oceans to good health.
One of these is http://sailorsforthesea.org!Sailors_for_the_Sea, and in 2010, they have put much effort into various projects designed to 'educate and empower the boating community to protect and restore our oceans and coastal waters.'
Among the highlights were:
1.The Around the Americas expedition completed its circumnavigation of the Americas with various scientists on board, traveling over 28,000 miles with stops in 13 countries. They sought not only to record findings, but also to educate and empower coastal communities along the way. A new documentary by KOMO News can be viewed on their website, and will be aired in some places on television.
2.Clean Regattas was (and will be) a program to certify regattas who generate less material waste, reduce the amount of debris in the water and on the shore, and the amount of nonpoint source pollution being washed into the sea. This year they had over 35,000 participants at 65 events.
3.This season they began an initiative to reduce the use of plastics, stopping over 8,000 disposable water bottles from entering the waste stream.
4.The inception of Team 11th Hour Racing, a collaboration between Sailors for the Sea and the 11th Hour Project. The team is also dedicated to sustainable, green racing.
As well as continuing the initiatives above, in 2011 they look forward to:
1.The launch of Rainy Day Kits, environmental education lesson plans for junior sailors designed by Sailors for the Sea with collaborators at the New England Aquarium, Scripps Institution of Oceanography among other marine science leaders.
2. The Atlantic Cup, presented by Team 11th Hour Racing, a new Open 40 Class regatta, that will strive to use the most sustainable practices available and be certified as a gold level Clean Regatta
3.Completion of Velux 5 Oceans, the first round the world race to participate in the Clean Regatta program.
If you would like to support Sailors for the Sea, you can find all the details on their http://sailorsforthesea.org!website.
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