Greenpeace's Rainbow Warrior III takes shape

Jul 02, 2011 by Frederic Happe
Shipbuilders work on the "Rainbow Warrior III", a $33.4 million vessel being built for environmental pressure group Greenpeace, at the Fassmer shipyard in Berne-Motzen, northern Germany. The Rainbow Warrior III will be a purpose-built motor-assisted sailing yacht owned and operated by Greenpeace and used in their activities such as environmental protests.

In a vast hangar in a north German shipyard, environmental pressure group Greenpeace's latest weapon is nearing completion: the state-of-the-art Rainbow Warrior III.

"The Rainbow Warrior III is much more than a flagship," the group's spokesman Mike Townsley told AFP ahead of the vessel being floated on Monday prior to its official launch for Greenpeace's 40th birthday in October.

"It is very modern and very ecological ... It is the practical application of our values."

Costing an estimated 23 million euros ($33.4 million), 10-15 percent of Greenpeace's total annual budget, this is the first time that is having a Rainbow Warrior built from scratch to its own specifications.

The first one, sunk by French agents in 1985 in New Zealand while attempting to stop nuclear testing in the Pacific, was a converted British fisheries research trawler built in 1955 acquired by Greenpeace in 1978.

Shipbuilders work on the "Rainbow Warrior III", a $33.4 million vessel being built for environmental pressure group Greenpeace, at the Fassmer shipyard in Berne-Motzen, northern Germany. The Rainbow Warrior III will be a purpose-built motor-assisted sailing yacht owned and operated by Greenpeace and used in their activities such as environmental protests.

The second, another former fishing vessel, is more than 50 years old and is being retired after being "rammed, raided and bombed" in numerous campaigns against , over-fishing and , Greenpeace says.

The contract to construct what Greenpeace calls its "eyes and ears" against -- and for action "when bearing witness isn't enough" -- went to 161-year-old German shipyard Fassmer in 2009.

The hull was made in the Polish port of Gdansk, with work beginning last year on July 10, the same date as the sinking in Auckland 25 years earlier in which one activist died. It was brought to Germany in November.

Visited by AFP in recent days, the 58-metre-long (190-foot-long) vessel, weighing 680 tonnes, already sports the logo of a white dove and rainbow on each side of its green hull.

Inside, 120 employees of the family-owned Fassmer are working hard to get everything ready and to ensure that the shipyard meets Greenpeace's demands that the vessel is ecologically sound.

"It is something very special working for Greenpeace," says the ship's chief designer Uwe Lampe, admitting to getting "a few migraines" trying to give the non-governmental organisation the ship of its dreams.

"We have constructed a boat with an unusually high number of environmental and safety standards ... We can only use parts that meet European norms and materials from Europe, so no Chinese steel or Russian plywood," he said.

Uwe Lampe, chief designer of the Fassmer shipyard, looks at the "Rainbow Warrior III" sailing ship being built for the environmental activists Greenpeace in Berne-Motzen near Bremen, northern Germany. The Rainbow Warrior III will be a purpose-built motor-assisted sailing yacht owned and operated by Greenpeace and used in their activities such as environmental protests.

"The whole concept of the boat was, how should I say, very complex," he told AFP. "It's like a small town, with its own electricity generator, air conditioning, waste water treatment and laboratory."

The boat is powered by sails on its 50-metre masts, by an electric motor allowing it to reach a top speed of 10 knots and a diesel engine giving it 15 knots.

Another demand from Greenpeace was for Rainbow Warrior III's radio room to be able to withstand for at least 30 minutes any attempts by special forces to break in -- something which would not be a first.

The ship can house a crew of up to 33 who can survive for four weeks without outside supplies. It also has a helipad in the stern and its masts will be decked out with 48 antennae and other pieces of electronic gadgetry.

More information can be found at a special website, anewwarrior.greenpeace.org, where Greenpeace is also calling for donations.

Explore further: New York state bans fracking

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Greenpeace takes on tuna fishing

Apr 23, 2008

Greenpeace says it confronted a U.S. tuna boat in the South Pacific this week as part of an effort to fight overfishing by commercial fishing fleets.

Greenpeace warns of radioactive sea life off Japan

May 26, 2011

Environmental group Greenpeace warned Thursday that marine life it tested more than 20 kilometres (12 miles) off Japan's stricken Fukushima nuclear plant showed radiation far above legal limits.

Greenpeace activists climb Greenland oil rig

May 29, 2011

(AP) -- Three Greenpeace activists on Sunday climbed up an oil rig off Greenland's coast in an attempt to stop a Scottish oil company from starting deepwater drilling in the arctic waters, the environmental ...

Greenpeace wants Facebook center off coal fuel

Sep 01, 2010

(AP) -- Greenpeace said about 500,000 Facebook users have urged the world's largest social network to abandon plans to buy electricity from a coal-based energy company for its new data center in the U.S.

Recommended for you

New York state bans fracking

11 hours ago

Governor Andrew Cuomo said Wednesday he would ban hydraulic fracking in New York State, citing health concerns about the controversial oil and gas drilling technique.

User comments : 14

Adjust slider to filter visible comments by rank

Display comments: newest first

MorituriMax
2.4 / 5 (12) Jul 02, 2011
Don't ever say Greenpeace isn't "suffering" for the cause. Now they can picket whalers while having cocktail dinners at the same time. Way to go for the environment!
NotParker
2.1 / 5 (14) Jul 02, 2011
A diesel engine? Hypocrites.

When rich environmentalists like Greenpeace give up their private jets and fossil fuel powered yachts and 7 homes (like Al Gore) I might consider global warming to not be a scam.
Caliban
3.6 / 5 (7) Jul 02, 2011
So, in order to be true to your cause, you have to work with outdated, unrepairable, inefficient equipment that may endanger your life, as well as your cause? I think that's just the jealousy talking, there, MM.

And as far as the charge of hypocrisy from NotParker- have you ever heard of biodiesel? That's no net carbon, you moron.

Both of you crybabies need to grow up. Or at least field challenges that have teeth.

Roland
4.5 / 5 (8) Jul 02, 2011
@NotParker: Diesel engines can burn many different kinds of fuels. Rudolph Diesel's first engine ran on peanut oil. They are more fuel-agnostic than turbine engines. Stop making assumptions, you're no good at it.
omatumr
1.4 / 5 (9) Jul 02, 2011
Greenpeace's Rainbow Warrior III takes . . . water?


Stop the propaganda!

Release the climate data.

Was the world's economy unsettled by

"An Inconvenient Truth" or "A Convenient Untruth" ?

References:

1. "An Inconvenient Truth" by Al Gore

www.climatecrisis.net/

2. "Earth's Heat Source - The Sun", Energy and Environment 20, 131-144 (2009)

http://arxiv.org/pdf/0905.0704

With kind regards,
Oliver K. Manuel
Former NASA Principal
Investigator for Apollo
NotParker
2.5 / 5 (8) Jul 03, 2011
So, in order to be true to your cause, you have to work with outdated, unrepairable, inefficient equipment that may endanger your life, as well as your cause?


If you believe CO2 endangers the earth, burning diesel and producing CO2 is endangering the earth. Period.

Stop the hypocrisy. Use sails.

The hull was built in Poland. Poland gets 98% of its electricity from coal.

Be a role model hypocrites. Don't use fossil fuels. Cut the trees for the boat down by hand.
Caliban
3.4 / 5 (5) Jul 03, 2011
So, in order to be true to your cause, you have to work with outdated, unrepairable, inefficient equipment that may endanger your life, as well as your cause?


If you believe CO2 endangers the earth, burning diesel and producing CO2 is endangering the earth. Period.

Stop the hypocrisy. Use sails.

The hull was built in Poland. Poland gets 98% of its electricity from coal.

Be a role model hypocrites. Don't use fossil fuels. Cut the trees for the boat down by hand.


Stop the stupidity. Get a brain.

TheSpiceIsLife
4.2 / 5 (5) Jul 03, 2011
Should of made it nuclear powered. Nimitz class aircraft carrier's range is considered unlimited, 20 year re-fuelling cycle, zero carbon emissions, plenty of fresh water from desalination using heat from reactors.

Basically, if Greenpeace had got out of the way 40 years ago, we'd all be using nuclear power, plentiful cheap electricity, electric vehicles could be the norm.

Instead, we've polluted our environment with more radiation from burning coal than nuclear power will ever disperse. See, for example, http://www.scient...ar-waste

WHOOPS!
omatumr
1.7 / 5 (6) Jul 03, 2011
As we prepare to celebrate the 235th anniversary of the birth of our nation, I fear not climate change but those who would use the threat of climate change to destroy the foundations of our great nation.

With kind regards,
Oliver K. Manuel
Former Green-Peacer
Former NASA Principal
Investigator for Apollo
Rohsn
3.7 / 5 (3) Jul 03, 2011
I think something along the lines of say PlanetSolar like boat would prove that they mean what they state are their goals.But I guess that kind of boat would cut into their the head office salaries too deeply can't allow that I guess.
TheGhostofOtto1923
3 / 5 (2) Jul 03, 2011
Looks like it will make a nice home for crabs and moray eels.
barakn
5 / 5 (2) Jul 04, 2011
Should of made it nuclear powered. ... zero carbon emissions...

That's a common rookie assumption. Plenty of carbon dioxide comes from the mining equipment used to mine uranium.
omatumr
1 / 5 (2) Jul 04, 2011
On this 235th anniversary of the Declaration of Independence, let's read that document:

We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.

That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed,

That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness.

http://www.archiv...ipt.html

The next 235 years will led mankind into total serfdom if we let world leaders and politicians continue to pretend that they are more powerful than the forces of Nature.
NotParker
1 / 5 (1) Jul 07, 2011
Should of made it nuclear powered. ... zero carbon emissions...

That's a common rookie assumption. Plenty of carbon dioxide comes from the mining equipment used to mine uranium.


And lets not get started on wind turbines. Concrete is one of the main sources of CO2 and wind turbines can use 1500 tonnes or more for the base.

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.