Everyone everywhere is talking about going green, reducing the carbon footprint, using sustainable energy and cutting back on emissions. This is a global concern as it should be.
We are trying to use more solar and wind energy in our homes and offices. We are working on making hybrid cars more a thing of the present as opposed to a thing of the future. We are growing crops smarter and more efficiently by using fewer chemicals and more natural fertilizers.
We are recycling more. There is even a new airline that is carbon neutral! All of these things are being done in the name of ecology and saving the earth.
What about ships and boats though? You know, that it used to be boats and ships that were not powered by sails and oars did not exist. Actually it is really wasn’t that long ago when you look at the scope of things.
But since the invention of the steam engine and the subsequent engines that power our nautical vessels, sails and oars have become almost novelties of the eccentric.
Apparently people in the boating world have now come to grip with reality and realized that all of the new innovative engines are contributing to the problems we are having as environment is concerned affecting the atmosphere and renewable resources. So, they have decided to do something about it.
Amazingly, one of these new ideas to reclaim our environment via water craft is called the SkySail. Imagine that, new innovation that was in use just 100 years ago. This is being marketed as a kite or parachute type apparatus that uses the power of the wind to draw the boat forward. That sounds awfully familiar, don’t you think?
It is said that when this is used in tandem with the engine it can conserve up to 35% of fuel. Can you guess how much fuel it can conserve when used without the engine?
There is another technology being tested too. This one is being called wave power and uses the power of the waves to make the boat move. Interestingly enough, this boat (Suntory Mermaid) has ‘flippers’ (read oars under the boat) to move through the water and effectively propel the boat forward.
This technology will be tested by the boat during a voyage to Japan from Hawaii.
After discussing those two ‘new and innovative’ technologies, how much of the earth’s resources do you think we could have conserved if we had stuck with the “tired old” technologies like sails and oars?