On that note, I'll let some photos do the talking.
Click each photo to enlarge.
We've reached a powerful milestone in our tallship build project, having just had a significant amount of ship building timber delivered to our shipyard in Punta Morales.
This means we're beginning to build the ship we've taken nearly two years to plan for.
This delivery of Cedro Amargo (known in English as Spanish Cedar) represents about 20% of the total lumber required to build the ship. In the mahogany family, it has a rich warm colour and is a hardwood - though not as dense as some tropical wood we have. Cited as a choice boat-building timber due to the anti-insect and rot-resistant properties, (directly translated, the name means ''bitter cedar'') we are excited to have this type of wood readily available on hand for our build.
People ask us all the time:
if you’re a green company, how can you cut down trees?
The answer is simple: lumber – when sourced responsibly – is one of the worlds most renewable resources. We are very careful about how we choose our timbers: making sure that the species is not endangered, using careful selective-cutting techniques which reduce impact on the forest, and obtaining the appropriate permits, approved by the Ministry of the Environment are ways we make sure we’re making an environmentally informed choice.
A pillar of our business plan is reforestation. We've already planted upwards of 1,000 trees and that number continues to grow. We’re building our shipyard structures out of large trimmings (branches) of robust Guachipelin trees, which are replanted as corner posts for buildings such as a workshop – they simply continue to grow as a new tree.
Lynx has been developing this regenerative building practice for years. These trimmings, along with other wood, is generously donated by local farms.
Another way they reduce impact is by seeking out wind-fallen trees which have naturally blown down or have toppled over. At our mountaintop headquarters of Monteverde, the rainy season routinely brings heavy waters and winds – meaning lots of trees come down and need to be dealt with.
The keel (or ‘’backbone’’) of Ceiba was found in the town of Upala, which was windtorn by Hurricane Otto in October 2016. We went to Upala to see the hurricane destruction first hand. There were trees lying everywhere. It was wonderful to give these fallen giants a purpose and new life in our ship build.
The Environmental Choice
Back to the La Pita Lumber yard and our new delivery of timbers.
Along with any ''curved'' tree-trunk pieces, most large branches are typically left on the forest floor to rot. We're inherently interested in putting these curves to use (frames! frames!) - but also the smaller branches.
We've requested as many banches as possible to also be brought to the shipyard: you'll see these eco-buildling materials soon as the corner posts of our woodshop and other structures on the shipyard.
An aspect with impact is that the 24 massive Spanish Cedars are sourced from La Pita; just 18km (11 miles) away from the shipyard in Punta Morales.
Even though we used a large truck to deliver the timbers, the carbon-footprint of these materials is very low due to the close proximity of the sites.
Other materials (such as refined concrete, mined steel or aluminum or processed fibreglass) would have hundreds to thousands more miles traveled.
Question the materials used around you:
just how far did that product travel to reach your hands?
Why is the transportation aspect a big deal? Consider this quote from Edward Humes’ book ‘’Door to Door’’: ‘’In the end, the iPhone has a transportation footprint at least as great as a 240,000-mile trip to the moon, and most or all of the way back.’’ The carbon footprint associated with transportation of materials can be serious. The average cup of coffee has travelled 30,000 miles to reach stores in America – greater than the circumference of the earth.
So far, 100% of the lumber for Ceiba is from Costa Rica – meaning few miles have been travelled to transport the materials. As well, these trees were planted around 50 years ago in a cow field by a farmer with foresight, and they're expected to live much longer as a ship. As the old carpenters´ adage goes:
“What you build should last longer than it takes for the materials to grow back.”
We are very excited about this delivery, as it shows that we are truly moving forward with the construction of the ship. Tangible steps like this show that progress is really happening.
Sometimes it can feel like we're moving so slowly. But this project is akin to the motion of a glacier: a colossal mass inching onward in such incremental steps as to feel motionless; until you see that ''glacial pace'' - the forward motion of solid rivers of ice from the land into the liquid water - is an unstoppable, powerful force.
It's reaching milestones such as this wood delivery that show the progress of the project.
Look away and, just as these frozen figureheads of environmental change, Ceiba charges forth with unseen, unstoppable momentum from the shore to the sea.
Thank you for your continued support of our project. Without people like you letting us (and everyone else!) know how much you follow our work and find it inspiring, we simply wouldn't be where we are today. Thanks for your emails, likes, shares and messages. Here's some more photos of the delivery - hope you enjoy them! Click photos to englarge.
We are a carbon-neutral and socially responsible for-profit corporation funded by private investment, and we hope to show that if shipping is to continue, there needs to be a huge shift in the way that people do business.