Construction of the First Electric Sailboat Made in Costa Rica Advances

The first electric sailboat with a national labor force is 50% complete, according to Sailcargo, the company that owns the project. It is the first ecological cargo ship made in the country, which will work 80% with wind energy (through the sails) and 20% with electricity (with an alternating motor).

This alternative means of transport, 45 meters long and 33.5 meters high, was born under the name of CEIBA, the sacred tree of the Mayans and also common in the pastures of Guanacaste. The initiative requires an investment of $ 4.2 million, of which half has been raised. The funds come from individual initiatives and private companies, explained Pierre Terranova, Sailcargo’s communication manager.

During its construction process, the project employs 15 people from the Punta Morales community, in Puntarenas, where the ship’s shipyard is located. Likewise, it impacts the community through a women’s association and training on sustainable fishing, the main economic activity in the area.

Once it’s finished, the goal is for it to transport organic-sourced products, primarily food. “The idea is that the partner companies share that sustainable vision of the project, which is zero emissions. We also value products made with biodegradable material

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The planned route for the ship once it enters into operation goes from Ecuador to Canada, making stops in Costa Rica, Nicaragua, Mexico and Alaska.

Reforestation included

The project goes beyond commercial purposes, according to Terranova, as it is accompanied by a reforestation program to offset the logging required to build the ship. Trees for Seas, the name of the program, expects to plant 2,000 trees to capture oxygen and offset emissions. In addition, 3% of the profits from the commercial activity of the ship will be used in initiatives for the environment, through the Astilleroverde organization.

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Visionary entrepreneur

CEIBA is an initiative led by Danielle Doggett, a young 30-year-old Canadian with 15 years of experience in traditional sailboats. At the age of 16 he was already part of the crews of larger ships such as the Swan Fan Makkum and other large vessels. Some time later, he founded his first company, Topsail Rigging, where he dedicated himself to designing and building the lines that are necessary for maneuvering the sails on this type of vessel.

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