Donation Means New Sea Shepherd Ship
At the annual Goed Geld Gala (Good Money Gala) in Amsterdam on January 26th, Sea Shepherd received its biggest ever donation of 8.3 million Euros ($9.35 million). The donation will be used to build the organization’s “Dream Project” - a new vessel for its Stop Illegal Fishing in the Southern Ocean campaign.
Since 2002, Sea Shepherd has been confronting illegal whalers and illegal fishermen in the waters surrounding the Antarctic continent. Sea Shepherd’s actions have been very successful, but the fleet is aging and the vessels are lacking speed. For many years, Sea Shepherd has looked for a vessel that has the range and capability of reaching high top speeds to be the Southern Ocean Patrol flagship. To date, however, budget restrictions have made such a purchase impossible.
Sea Shepherd will now be able to have a custom-designed ship built that will be capable of achieving speeds that far exceed any of the vessels in its current fleet. After researching possible ship builders for the last two years, negotiations with Dutch ship builder Damen have resulted in a blueprint of our ideal ship, said Alex Cornelissen, CEO of Sea Shepherd Global.
“The Southern Ocean is one of the last regions of untouched natural beauty on the planet. Unfortunately we are seeing an increasing number of illegal activities that aim to spoil this pristine environment. Unregulated and illegal extraction of marine wildlife is disrupting the Antarctic eco-system and urgent action is needed.
“We are now able to proceed with the purchase of our dream ship and lift our conservation efforts to protect the Southern Ocean from illegal exploitation to the next level. We are extremely grateful to the Dutch Postcode Lottery and the people of the Netherlands for this very generous support,” said Cornelissen.
Sea Shepherd received 8.3 million Euros from the postcode lotteries in the Netherlands, Sweden and the United Kingdom. The Dutch Postcode Lottery contributed 7.5 million Euros. Further to the Dream Project, Sea Shepherd received a check for 900,000 Euros from the Postcode Lottery, bringing the total donation that Sea Shepherd has received from the Lottery since 2007 to 15.5 million Euros.