Let’s be clear, environmental campaigning is usually hard graft, with long hours and many frustrations. It can involve long hours sitting in a boat somewhere cold, or hot, just waiting for something to happen. It might mean attending excruciatingly dull international meetings, looking for a 30-second opportunity to lobby a politician in a corridor, or trying to get an important issue picked up by media when there’s a dozen more newsworthy stories grabbing the headlines. It’s not a 9-to-5 job.

But sometimes, the industry, company or government at the centre of the campaign, for reasons best known to them, decides to do our job for us, often when we least expect it.

In August 2006, during a campaign to highlight the overfishing of tuna in the Mediterranean, the Rainbow Warrior was headed for the port of Marseille in France, where the onboard campaign team planned to hold workshops on marine reserves. On arrival, the ship was blocked from entering the port by a fleet of tuna seiners – an act that catapulted the tuna issue into world headlines. Oceans Campaigner Karli Thomas, who was on board the Rainbow Warrior at the time, takes up the story:

And this is just one out of many tales from the Rainbow Warrior. 

Our new Rainbow Warrior -- a purpose-built campaigning ship -- is due to be completed in October 2011, when she can take over for the current Rainbow Warrior. 

Help us build a new Rainbow Warrior

When it comes to protecting the environment, the Rainbow Warrior has taken up the good fight in many parts of the globe. But now she's in trouble. She’s 52, worn out and constantly being repaired. We desperately need a new Rainbow Warrior to continue protecting Mother Earth.