As the boats returned to San Francisco and the Mega Expedition came to an end Boyan Slat talked about their initial findings. After 30 boats spent the month of August traversing the Great Pacific Garbage patch they collected more samples than have been collected in the last 40 years. Their research casts a new light on the problem of plastic pollution and it’s severity. In the next 10 years The Ocean Cleanup will be working to try and remove up to half of the worlds harmful plastic pollution in the oceans.
We have a new series called New Horizons, which will take a look at the many cruising grounds and sweet sailing spots in the US and abroad. We’ve asked the folks from the vast network of ASA schools to help us out and give us the skinny on the cool places they call home. Nothing like getting the lowdown from a local. We all know the BVIs are great, but what about the places we haven’t heard of? This is going to be fun!
First up is Grand Traverse Bay / Lake Michigan. We asked Rod Call from Great Lakes Sailing Company in Michigan about sailing in the gorgeous waters of the north.
“There are quite a few things that always come up when we talk about sailing in our neck of the woods,” said Call. “The water.Crystal clear. Green. You’d think you were in the Caribbean if it weren’t for the pine trees dotting the shoreline. Also, that it’s freshwater – or as we call it ‘unsalted Sailing’. You go for a swim…no need to rinse off. And, that it’s a mostly easy place to sail. The waters of Grand Traverse Bay and Lake Michigan are deep. And the shallows are green and crystal clear. So if you are near, or in, green water…you know to check your depth.”
Are you a sailor that feels the need to share your knowledge & love of sailing with others?
The American Sailing Association was organized to establish national standards for sailing instructor certification in the United States. We take experienced instructors and expert sailors and give them the tools they need to become certified sailing instructors.
ASA Sailing Instructor clinics test existing skills and knowledge while teaching a structured curriculum and proven presentation techniques.
Take the challenge and attend an ASA Instructor Qualification Clinic (IQC) this Fall!
“Just beneath the surface you find all these things you wouldn’t see otherwise…” ASA interviews Stella Diamant, The Mega Expedition Coordinator, via satellite phone from the middle of the Pacific Garbage Patch! Her first hand account of the plastic pollution in the oceans is quite revealing. Boyan Slat, the founder of The Ocean Cleanup, is quite content with results from The Mega Expedition – there is a lot of analysis ahead but so far the “largest research effort of it’s kind” is a success.
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Stella Diamant works for The Ocean Cleanup. She is currently in the middle of the Great Pacific Garbage Patch sailing on a Gunboat 66 called Extreme H2O collecting plastic pollution samples as part of the Mega Expedition that she helped put together.
I was raised in Brussels, Belgium and attended an international school. I have always been environmentally conscious and even as a young person I would give speeches in my classes about climate change etc. I have always enjoyed wide open spaces and nature, and spent a good part of my childhood riding horses and climbing trees.
As we further promote the efforts of The Ocean Cleanup (and the Mega Expedition) aimed to rid the world’s oceans of toxic plastic, we thought it might be cool to create a quiz about the subject. As sailors, we believe the oceans need help and protection. Our hope is all sailors will do what they can, individually and collectively, to reduce plastic consumption and thereby alleviate what the oceans and the living beings that live there are being asked to bear. Remember – today it’s the fish, turtles and seabirds – tomorrow it’s us. Okay sermon over – take the quiz – it’s actually fun! Photo courtesy of Turning the Tide and Sons of Norway.
When you stop to think about it… sailing is pretty amazing. From a historical perspective, through its role in travel, trade and war, it was the absolute hinge of western civilization for hundreds of years. Through that time, sailors’ slang and terminology became rooted in the English lexicon and still exists profoundly to this day.
Here’s a list of 10 everyday phrases that you may not have realized were born in the days when sailing made the world go round… wait… is that a nautical phrase?
- “A clean bill of health”
According to dictionary.com this phrase derives from the days when the crew of ocean going ships might be a little less than hygienic, so they needed to present a certificate, carried by a ship, attesting to the presence or absence of infectious diseases among the ship’s crew and at the port from which it has come.
From the shores of Hawaii, and the shores of the mainland the Mega Expedition has begun… 24 sailboats are out in the middle of the Pacific collecting more plastic measurements in 3 weeks than have been collected in the past 40 years combined. Any day now we expect to hear from Stella Diamant, the Mega Expedition Coordinator, onboard Extreme H2O as they traverse the notorious Pacific Garbage Patch where so much of these plastics congregate. ASA will be conducting satellite interviews with The Ocean Cleanup team detailing what they are seeing and how their historic missing is progressing. Watch the video >>
Sometimes summer school can be fun, especially for those sailing instructors who attended an ASA Instructor Qualification Clinic (IQC) held at R&R Charters and Sail School in Chester, MD.
Congratulations to all the newly certified ASA Instructors:
- ASA 201 – Phinehas Bowen, Larry Dean, Miguel Moravec
- ASA 203 – William Rathbun, Suzanne Acevedo
- ASA 204 – Suzanne Acevedo, William Rathbun
- ASA 218 – Maragret Pmmert, Jeffrey Sippy, Kenneth Roach, & William Rathbun