Sail Cargo is a new organization that has set out on the west coast of Costa Rica to build and then run a commercial sailing cargo ship business. Sail Cargo combines a zero carbon building technique with completely sustainable harvesting of natural materials from the countries rain forests; for every tree that is cut down to build a ship, more trees are planted on a regular basis.
Once launched, the first ship, to be called CEIBA, intends to carry cargo along the western coasts of Central and North America using only the power of the wind and sun. The ship itself is a topsail schooner with three masts and four cross yards on the fore mast for down-wind square sails.
Harvesting the timber, building the wood ship and then sailing an old-fashioned schooner is a labor-intensive enterprise. The effort, which is a non-profit and funded by a wide range of donors, relies upon volunteers who wish to learn the art of shipbuilding from the few seasoned builders who run the boat yard.
The sustainable Sail Cargo project anticipates that they will partner with firms in North and South America that focus on carbon-free and sustainable marketing themes and will be able to use the fact that their products are delivered to markets with a zero carbon footprint as proof of their commitment to saving the planet from global warming. It is only fitting that Sail Cargo is based in Costa Rica, a country that has the goal of becoming completely carbon free by 2021.