Sea Shepherd, longtime warriors against the illegal slaughter of marine animals, has received an incredible donation: a whopping $12 million (!!!), from the National Postcode Lottery, a Dutch charity that runs lotteries and gives half the proceeds to charities each year. Past recipients include Amnesty International, Greenpeace, UNICEF, and the World Food Programme, to name but a few.
The National Postcode Lottery has supported SS since 2007, to the tune of €14.7 million.
SS's proposal, Stop Illegal Fishing in the Southern Ocean, impressed lottery officials so much it won this year's donation. The money will be used exclusively to construct a vessel that's faster, has a longer range and is stronger than any of the Japanese harpoon vessels.
Capt.Paul Watson: "That's been our biggest handicap in the Southern Ocean: not being able to outrun those harpoon vessels. This vessel will enable us to do just that."
Never before has SS been able to custom-design exactly what it wants. Until now, it's received and re-purposed existing ships, but unfortunately, these are getting older and are simply not fast enough.
SS Global's CEO, Alex Cornelissen: "Negotiations with Dutch ship builder Damen has resulted in a blueprint of our ideal ship." Here's the designer's conceptual artwork:
The vessel's under construction in Vietnam, and anticipated to be ready for duty in 2016. Yes, this will be a game changer indeed.