The Arctic 30 thank YOU for your support

All of the Greenpeace 'Arctic 30' have now returned home, having been detained in Russia for 100 days following a peaceful protest against Arctic oil drilling. Through this video, they would like to express their gratitude to all those around the world who have shown support for their cause. 2013-12-29

Video details



History

The Arctic Sunrise's first trip took it to the North Sea and the northeast Atlantic, where Greenpeace documented marine pollution by oil from offshore installations. Since then it has worked everywhere from within 450 miles of the North Pole, to Antarctica’s Ross Sea, and has navigated both the Congo and the Amazon.

Designed as an icebreaker, its rounded, keelless hull allows it to navigate through sea ice - but also makes life rather interesting in rolling seas. In 1997, The Arctic Sunrise became the first ship to circumnavigate James Ross Island in the Antarctic, a previously impossible journey until a 200m thick ice shelf connecting the island to the Antarctic continent collapsed. This was just one of the many signs of climate change which the Arctic Sunrise has helped document.

The Arctic Sunrise has returned repeatedly to the Arctic to work on a variety of issues, included several visits to Alaska to study climate change and to oppose Northstar, British Petroleum's project to open up a new offshore oil frontier that threatened oil spills in this vulnerable region, and further contributing to global warming.

In 2009, the ship spent many months working around the coast of Greenland and Arctic sea ice, documenting the effects of climate change on the region.

In the Southern Oceans, the Arctic Sunrise, along with its sister ship the Esperanza, thwarted Japanese attempts to pursue its so-called "scientific" whaling programme;  it also chased pirate vessels fishing illegally for Patagonian Toothfish to the pirate port of Mauritius.

Manoeuvring directly into the missile's path did not prevent the US from proceeding in 2000 to test its "Star Wars"missile defence system, which threatens to ignite a new nuclear arms race.

Fortunately the Arctic Sunrise survived to tell the tale and continued on to Argentina for the start of the Latin America toxics tour in 1998.

Specifications

Port of registry: Amsterdam, Netherlands
Former name: Polarbjorn
Date of charter: 1995
Number of berths: 28
Inflatable boats: 2 Ribs and 2 inflatabes
Helicopter capable: Yes
Type of ship: Sea-going motor yacht
Call sign: PE 6851
Built: 1975 by AS Vaagen Verft
Gross tonnage: 949 tonnes
Length O.A: 49.62 m
Breadth: 11.50 m
Maximum Draught: 5.30 m
Maximum Speed: 13 Knots
Main engine: MAK 9M452AK 2495 IHP 1619kW
Aux engines: 2 * 163 KW (Deutz BF6M1013MC)
Bow & stern thrusters: 400 hp each

Personal Accounts

Captain of the Arctic Sunrise Arne Sorensen during the Southern Ocean expedition in December 1999

We are peacefully protesting against illegal Japanese whaling in the waters around Antarctica when we hear a mighty crash and the ship rolls heavily. The chief engineer David de Jong rushes to the bridge shouting, "That didn't sound like ice"!
He's right - it's neither sea ice nor an iceberg, but the Japanese whaling factory ship Nisshin Maru, 10 times the Arctic Sunrise's weight, ramming us.
Despite risking the lives of both crews, fortunately no one is hurt.

Professor Peter Wadhams of Cambridge University after the Arctic Meltdown expedition in 2009

"The offer by Greenpeace to use the ship and her helicopter, and the assistance offered towards the cost of the ice mass balance buoys, demonstrate Greenpeace's commitment to supporting critical climate research in the vital area relating to changes in Arctic ice volumes and thickness - the theme that underlay all of the ship's work this summer. The support offered by the whole crew on board was amazing - unstinted, professional, and far better than I normally find on government-owned research ships."

The latest updates

 

Arctic sea ice reaches minimum extent for 2013 as Greenpeace activists are held in...

Press release | 20 September, 2013 at 19:42

Amsterdam, 20 September 2013 - US Scientists have announced that Arctic sea ice appears to have reached its sixth lowest extent in recorded history this year. The news comes as 30 Greenpeace activists remain in the custody of Russian security...

Why does Gazprom seem to be making ridiculous claims about our safety pod?

Blog entry by Ben Ayliffe | 20 September, 2013 73 comments

Greenpeace International has a long and proud history of peaceful protests in defence of the environment, but right now Russian authorities are holding 30 of our activists on board the Arctic Sunrise for opposing the reckless oil...

At home in the 'pod' - inside the Prirazlomnaya oil action

Video | 20 September, 2013 at 14:00

On September 18, 2013, Greenpeace activists attempted to attach 'survival pods' to the Prirazlomnaya oil platform in the Pechora Sea in an attempt to stop it drilling the world's first offshore oil well in the Arctic.

Greenpeace International ship remains under control of Russian authorities in...

Press release | 20 September, 2013 at 13:10

Amsterdam, 20 September 2013 - The crew of the Greenpeace icebreaker Arctic Sunrise remain in the custody of Russian authorities following an armed boarding of the ship in international waters yesterday. The ship has now been under armed guard...

Armed Russian Coast Guard boards peaceful Greenpeace protest ship

Press release | 19 September, 2013 at 17:58

Pechora Sea, 19 September 2013 - The Russian Coast Guard has boarded the Greenpeace International ship Arctic Sunrise and is arresting the 25 activists on board following a protest against Gazprom’s Arctic oil drilling operations.

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