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Esperanza’s chief engineer takes us on an underwater tour

by Mike Gaworecki

October 6, 2009

Before we left Vanuatu for the second leg of the current tour, our onboard videographer did a quick dive test to check his underwater camera. He swam under the Esperanza and filmed the whole thing. I thought the footage was pretty amazing and definitely worth sharing with you all. But to make it even more interesting, I asked the Esperanza‘s chief engineer, Freddy, to narrate what we were seeing. Check out the video and a note from Freddy, who has been working on Greenpeace ships for quite a while — in fact, he was even there for the very beginning of the Defending Our Pacific tour way back in 2004.

Freddy in the ECR copyright Paul Hilton/Greenpeace

Freddy in the engine control room (ECR). © Paul Hilton/Greenpeace

My name is Freddy, I am from Argentina and am the current chief engineer on board the Esperanza. Since 1994 I have worked as an engineer on tankers and fishing vessels in my country. In 2002 I had the opportunity to start working as electrician on board the Arctic Sunrise, and I gladly took the opportunity. I have continued working as electrician and engineer on board all three Greenpeace ships since then.

Since people think I’m not busy enough with my 12 hours of work every day (at least), they sometimes ask me to tattoo them. I had to stop, though, because high stress levels were leading me to confuse fairies with pin-up girls… dangerous if the tattooed subject is a big hairy sailor asking for a pin-up girl.

In 2004 I had the opportunity to be part of the crew helping launch the Defending Our Oceans campaign to establish marine reserves on board the Rainbow Warrior. It was there that I found out what a FAD is and the destructiveness of the purse seiner method of fishing. Last year I was here on the Espy and again witnessed the same thing, with the only difference that the quantity of fish on the nets was getting lower and lower.

I hope this time we are able to get the full reserves and then start heavily with the enforcement. I feel really proud of having done my bit these past few years.

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