admin by Providence Sail Cargo | 29 Apr 2019
Local Food,Sustainable Transportation

Help us launch Canada’s first Sail Cargo Service in the Salish Sea


Help reduce the carbon footprint of moving goods in a real and meaningful way.

Help reduce the carbon footprint of moving goods in a real and meaningful way.

Help us launch Canada's first Sail Cargo service in the Salish Sea, providing artisans and individuals an opportunity to reduce the carbon footprint of moving goods in a real and meaningful way.

Built in 1903, the sailing vessel Providence has been a working ship for more than 115 years and is the oldest on the BC coast.

Partners Simon Fawkes, Danny Robertson and Terry McPhail have purchased Providence and plan to start Canada's first Sail Cargo service between Vancouver and the Southern Gulf Islands in the summer months. In the winter months Providence will sail to Central America where we have partnered with Sailcargo Inc. of Costa Rica to bring Coffee, Cocao and other high demand ethical goods to the region lowering their carbon footprint.

There are several well established Sail Cargo operations in Europe and Providence aims to be the first on the West Coast of the Americas with a strong local (Salish Sea region) presence in the summer months.

Well under way with boat purchased, major refit completed, routes established, customers engaged, docks secured and much more, we now need your help to pay for final touches and working capital for a May 2019 start. We also need to build a strong community around this exciting new "Sailed to Market" project!

Why Sail Cargo and Providence Sailed to Market goods?

The worlds shipping industry creates more than 30% of total nitrous oxide emissions and nitrous oxide has 300 times the global warming effect of carbon dioxide.  We need to reduce our ecological footprint and move to a lower carbon economy and Sail Cargo can help accomplish that goal. By moving cargo under sail there are zero emissions produced and when under power Providence's engine will be powered by Bio-Diesel made from recycled vegetable oils by local partner supplier Lower Mainland Bio-Diesel with a 80% reduction in carbon dioxide emissions over conventional diesel. By slowing down and using the wind to power us when possible Providence will also reduce impacts on local Orca populations and other marine mammals.

Providence Sail Cargo will offer an alternative to the carbon heavy cost of traditional shipping. Our primary route between the lower mainland and the southern gulf islands provides a meaningful way for conscientious vendors to ship their products to a larger market while staying close to the artisan values of community minded sustainability. Consumers are then given the access and opportunity to choose products that are more in line with the values of quality, locally sourced products created and shipped in a sustainable manner.

Sailed to Market - Tote shipping program

If you have goods you want to ship between Vancouver and the Southern Gulf Islands we will offer a scheduled weekly runs to Ganges on Saltspring (Arrive Wednesday afternoon and depart Thursday morning) and Silva Bay on Gabriola Island (Arrive Thur afternoon depart Friday morning back to Vancouver. On demand stops on Mayne, Galiano, North Pender, Thetis Islands and Ladysmith on Vancouver Island. If you have goods that will fit in one of our three sizes of totes and you can cary it to the boat we have a standard one way shipping rate and for larger items that require logistics and deck space call us and we will try to make it work. For the Wayblaze campaign we are offering a discounted rate on our large tote shipping.

Sail Cargo Route

On Wednesdays from May 15th to Sept 25th we will sail from the Vancouver Maritime Museum to Ganges arriving by 5pm or earlier. We can stop at Galiano, Mayne or North Pender on the way upon request.

On Thursdays we will receive shipping goods in Ganges then depart for Ladysmith on Vancouver Island, arriving by 5pm. We can stop at Thetis on the way upon request.

On Fridays we will receive shipping goods in Ladysmith and sail back to Vancouver arriving at the Vancouver Maritime Museum on or before 5pm. We can stop at Silva Bay on Gabriola Island on the way upon request.

Our Team

Simon Fawkes, Captain  Partner

With more than 40 years experience on the sea, in a variety of craft and over 20,000 miles of off shore sailing Simon has the experience necessary to make trips safe and fun. Born and raised in Vancouver sailing in the Salish Sea all his life he has good knowledge of the area and can share with others his love for it’s unique beauty. Simon has also spent many years sailing in exotic parts of the world such as the South Pacific, Mediterranean, Caribbean, Turkey, Greece, Australia and New Zealand and loves to share his experience with others. Simon’s passion for sailing and the sea and his amiable nature help to provide an unforgettable experience for those who come aboard Providence.

Danny Robertson, Partner and relief Captain

Danny was born and raised on Canada’s west coast and as a transport Canada certified captain has built his career in the marine industry using experience gained from commanding vessels in various roles such as sail-training, towing, tour boats, youth programs, and water taxi/crew boats. He is a community-minded individual who enjoys working with people and is committed to the preservation and sharing West Coast maritime culture and heritage while promoting choices for low carbon charters and shipping.

Terry McPhail, Partner

Terry is a lifelong resident of Richmond and President of Shelter Island Marina and Boatyard. Established in 1975, Shelter Island Marina and Boatyard is one of the largest full-service marine facilities on the west coast of BC.

Terry believes in giving back to the community and has served as Director and past President or Chairman of the Richmond Chamber of Commerce, BC Association of Harbours, Ports & Marina's, Richmond Savings Credit Union, Richmond Hospital Foundation and the Richmond Community Foundation. He has also served on the City of Richmond's Intercultural Relations Advisory Committee, the Economic Development Task Force, the Olympic Oval Steering Advisory Committee and the East Richmond Community Centre.

Slow down and connect with locally produced goods and the artisans that produce them.

Providence Sail Cargo


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