"Very, very bad stuff" finally banned by EPA

hull bottom via tree hugger

Treehugger.com reports that the EPA has finally banned a substance that is considered one of the most toxic substances ever released into the world’s oceans.

Tributyltin, a type of biocide, is a cheap and powerful barnacle and algae killer that was once commonly used on most of the world’s commercial ships. It is typically mixed into the bottom coating for hulls, where it helps keep the ship clear of barnacles and other similar species. TBT is highly prized by sailboat racers and yachtsmen who use it to make their hulls move more easily through the water and by certain environmentalists, who argue it can help prevent the spread of invasive species from one port to another.

According to the post, every major US and European paint company stopped using the substance in 2001 and endorse the maritime treaty banning it. China and other developing maritime nations would seem to be the target here.

Lindy Johnson, a lawyer who works for NOAA, called it “very, very bad stuff.”

Good news for our Oceans!

15th Annual NYC Tugboat Race & Challenge

Growing up all I ever wanted to be was a tug boat captain. So as you can imagine, this floats my boat.

Tugster has a great post about yesterday’s (September 2, 2007) tugboat extravaganza in NYC. He’s shared some amazing pictures and promises more to follow. Check it out.

NYC Tug Boat Race 07 by Will Van Dorp

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Sailing with a World Class Leadership Team

Leading Questions is one of my regular reads and yesterday Ed Brenegar wrote a great post Sailing with a World Class Leadership Team in which he profiles his friend Peter Grimm, a superyact crew chief.

Perseus

Perseus, the superyacht mentioned in the article and pictured above was built by Perini Navi, the same yard that built the Maltese Falcon which I posted about yesterday.

These are very impressive vessels; however, over the past decade the superyacht industry has grown so rapidly that there is a looming crisis in finding qualified crew to man them. (Read about it here.) One of Sea-Fever’s objectives in creating and delivering youth sail training programs like the ones chronicled in this blog (here, here, here, and elsewhere) is to introduce young people to maritime careers. Of course, our number one objective is to give these young people life changing experiences that teach valuable lessons about respect, teamwork, leadership and so much more. In the long run, the benefits of these programs can be far reaching. The superyacht owners and operators should take more notice of them because the future of their vessels could depend on it.

Maritime Media – Wall Street Journal and Wired

Yesterday’s (August 31, 2007) Wall Street Journal had several interesting maritime related articles.

Deep Water Donald Crowhurst WSJ Joe Morgenstern reviewed the new film Deep Water. (You can watch the trailer here). This documentary chronicles the ill-fated journey of Donald Crowhurst, an amateur British sailor, in the 1968 solitary nonstop sailboat race around the globe.

As Crowhurst’s situation grows desperate, the scope of the film expands — from a good yarn to a haunting, complex tale of self-promotion, media madness, self-delusion and, finally, self-destruction.

Mines Bigger book cover Also in yesterday’s Wall Street Journal, Pete DuPont reviewed David A. Kaplan’s new book, Mine’s Bigger: Tom Perkins and the Making of the Greatest Sailing Machine Ever Built. The Maltese Falcon is one of the largest and most technologically sophisticated sailing ships in the world. She is owned by Silicon Valley venture capitalist Thomas J. Perkins who has had a passion for sailing all his life. 

Kaplan also wrote a piece about the Maltese Falcon in the July 2007 issue of Wired entitled Extreme Sailing: The Biggest Boat in the World which is worth a read. 

Maltese Falcon’s Wikipedia entry has lots of information including some great external links. (Official website/blog).