My aim is to travel from the UK to Brisbane for one of my best friends' wedding. Plane travel is so environmentally damaging so I am looking for another way. I also think that by travelling over land and sea I will be able to understand our world better as I will connect with the people and landscapes and not just look at the departure board in the airport. Any tips gratefully received!! Departure date 1st September.

Wednesday, August 09, 2006

Planning and Inspiration


Have just got back from the Big Green Gathering where I had a great time building a Spiral of Junk the Wierd Wild Web (see photo) with a great gang of people and where I was re-inspired that I had to do this journey even though it is really hard trying to organise it. I feel like I have devoted myself to doing what I can to reduce my impact on the environment and to nourish it aswell. If I flew to Australia I would negate everything I have done for the last 6 years and that would seem sad. I have just got my Russian Visa which is exciting and I will apply for my Belarus one tomorrow. Just heard news that the cargo boat from Singapore to Oz will now be over £1K so I may have to rethink that and have looked through all the crewing websites again...Jessa and Arthur at CAT (Centre for Alternative Technology) have kindly done a press release to promote my trip and took some lovely photos of me today. We still have no water at home, so no chance for washing hair since the festival-not a good look but I better get used to it for the trip...

38 Comments:

At 8:36 pm, August 15, 2006, Anonymous Dave said...

pob lwc Babs, gobeithio byddi di'n dod nol yn diogel....cofiwch i dod a llyfr i dysgu Cymraeg pan ti'n ar ffordd!

Llawer o cariad a pob hwyl,

Dave

 
At 9:07 am, August 18, 2006, Anonymous Anonymous said...

The Singapore, Indonesia and Australia area is very popular for those making yacht passages. Acquaint yourself with a big yacht club in Singers and ascertain if anyone's making such a passage. They will nearly always welome a crew member, even if you can only cook and clean. You will get a free passage and even more advenure. My friend travelled from Aus to the UK entirely free using this method. If interested I can fix you up with his email address. Good luck.
Kevin Barber
barberk@a.dii.mod.uk

 
At 9:08 am, August 18, 2006, Blogger Kevin said...

Ooops. Missed out a 't'

 
At 11:28 pm, August 18, 2006, Blogger Babs said...

Diolch Dave, can't read the whole thing yet (but I can read most!) and I am working on the rest..... When the Welsh Language Board send me a cd I will be off!

 
At 10:41 am, August 20, 2006, Blogger Mia said...

I look orward to reading your blog as you go along. I admire you for doing as you say.

 
At 8:51 pm, August 20, 2006, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Are you living vegan? That helps a lot to save the atmosphere. Cows e.g. produce much methan. I would be happy if you could answer me (and-may@web.de).
Thanks and respect for your project!

 
At 10:47 pm, August 20, 2006, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Kind of a weird way to do it.
QF and BA do it direct, and do there best to save emissions. Now a days it all about time. People do not have the time to do an amazing journey like that. Especailly for hte cost of travelling by boat. Some ships i have looked at are way over £2000. While a flt takes 7 or 8 hours, some airlines donate money to eath charities, and all are looking at new ways to help save emissions.

 
At 10:57 pm, August 20, 2006, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'm sorry to tell you this, but taking a flight down to Australia would have been much friendlier to the environment than your trip. It is going to be a wonderful and unforgettable experience, but cleaner, no way. A modern airliner uses less gas than a car (per passenger), and you're going to find yourself on stinking russian trucks and busses and probably some oil leaking southern asian container ship. But othjer than that, great project! Good luck!

 
At 11:23 pm, August 20, 2006, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Bad idea. ;) Waste of resources doing this trip.

Did you also know that a car is way less efficient than a commercial aircraft based on number of seats and fuel used per seat?

Why not start walking instead? ;)

 
At 11:29 pm, August 20, 2006, Anonymous Anonymous said...

As many have said, the way you plan to do this trip is much less environmentally friendly than flying. Maybe you should have done some research before assuming that taking countless busses, trains and boats will be less environmentally friendly than a plane.

 
At 12:05 am, August 21, 2006, Anonymous johan lundgren said...

"QF and BA do it direct"

By the way:

QF = Qantas
BA = British Airways

And by 'direct', it isn't completely direct. You still have to stop somewhere in the far east on a layover, usually in SIN (Singapore), HKG (Hong Kong), BKK (Bangkok) or KUL (Kuala Lumpur).

 
At 12:08 am, August 21, 2006, Anonymous Anonymous said...

While I agree with the posts above about how an Aircraft uses less fuel and has less carbon emissions per passenger than a bus, train, or deisle powered ship, if that's the way you want to get to Brisbane then good for you. But taking the trip this way will be far worse for the earth than a plane. At least you will be able to have a more interesting journey than stuck for 24 hours in the back of a plane. Don't take any notice of the idiotic comments above made by retarded computer geeks who have nothing better to do but bring others down for trying something different.

Good luck babs :)

 
At 12:09 am, August 21, 2006, Anonymous darkie in a dunk tank said...

I think its fabulous that you plan on doing it this way. BTW do you plan on going anywhere near Thailand, or Singapore? I need someone to mule, I mean deliver something for me.

 
At 12:11 am, August 21, 2006, Anonymous Burke Harper said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

 
At 12:23 am, August 21, 2006, Anonymous Paul said...

Good luck to you. Should be an interesting journey.

However, why not just admit the real reasons why you're doing it. Are you seriously saying you're never going to step foot into a plane in your life? When you get to Brisbane, are you taking the bus home from there too?

The environment has got nothing to do with your frolic, but it is sooner a desire to maybe write an ickle book or something like that.

Nevertheless, have a good time. If you get to Belarus, don't forget to assist in their struggle for democracy and I expect you to be active in Burma as well should you venture to that part of SE Asia.

 
At 12:26 am, August 21, 2006, Anonymous Anonymous said...

That's just weird!
As everyone else said: it is even worse what you are doing! Have you ever been to a developing country? Have you seen the cars and trucks there?
I think it's more important that people in the world are happy, have enough food and live save. So maybe you should better get a job and donate your money? And make me happy and wash yourself, please!

 
At 2:58 am, August 21, 2006, Anonymous jane said...

Good luck and I hope you have a wonderful journey.

I am shocked by so many cruel comments. I guess people are threatened by you for some reason!

 
At 7:26 am, August 21, 2006, Anonymous Vicky said...

You should grab a copy of Peter Moore's book The Wrong Way Home - London to Sydney the Hard Way. It is about travelling overland without using a plane. It is a great read and will give you a few tips!

 
At 7:47 am, August 21, 2006, Anonymous Anonymous said...

enjoy your trip, hope you don't have a lot of problems while getting around...

chris from germany

 
At 9:40 am, August 21, 2006, Anonymous gkirk said...

I like ya very much but I like also planes, so I'm sorry we ya don't match.

 
At 10:34 am, August 21, 2006, Anonymous CM said...

All these people are very unkind - maybe these foreign carts are awful for the environment and it might be better to just get on a plane - but at least you're trying to make a difference and stand by what you believe in...

I think short haul flights are the real problem, as the planes themselves will take off and land 5-10+ times a day, which is what emits the most.

 
At 11:43 am, August 21, 2006, Anonymous In Da House said...

I wonder how you were able to post on the Internet without electricity :-O

Less bullshit next time, please.

 
At 8:05 am, August 22, 2006, Blogger james said...

yo babs..the blog looks like its evolving as it should, its touched a nerve with a lot of people;...hmm...and i see so many people are quick to justify air travel compared to 'foreign' buses etc...but as i understand it the problem with airline emmissions is that they are released directly into the atmosphere, where they are up to three times as harmful as land emmissions...makes sense to me...keep it touch... j

 
At 8:35 am, August 22, 2006, Blogger johnmain said...

Well , in reference to all those negative comments , what you are doing is FAR better for the environment than aircraft travel.

I live in Brisbane and hope you have a safe journey to our river city in the sub-tropics.

I know exactly what you are going through. My wife and I recently travelled by train to Cairns (2000 Kms)in far north Qld and we were constantly asked to explain why we weren't travelling by air.

Apart from the fact that train travel is incredibly relaxing and air travel is really uncomfortable for a tall broad-shouldered person , we saw the rivers , the forests , the hills and the mountains. We saw how some rivers were flowing rapidly , some were dried up. We noticed dozens of massive trains hauling coal bound for China. We saw the devastation of a recent cyclone. We travelled through every small town on the coast. NONE OF THIS WOULD BE POSSIBLE from a height of 35000 feet !

All The best Babs - John Main

 
At 2:51 pm, August 22, 2006, Blogger hueyvic said...

This is crazy...Don't go...and save the planet. I feel guilty using this computer in a library...At least I'll walk home to me hedge. People like you perpetuate the myth that we can all do what we like and get away with it, particularly bourgious university graduates. Have "fun" cos thats all you're doing...at our expence.

 
At 2:08 am, August 23, 2006, Blogger Phil Boote said...

Babs Id like to firstly wish you well on your journey. Secondly Id like to commend you and any fellow reader that does anything positive for the environment. If we all did a few small things to change our imapact it would make a difference.
I ve just done an Overseas trip to Europe. Yes I did fly. But in each city I always tried to cut down on water usage, recycle and observe how the locals treat the environment. I had two extremes, Denmark and Greece.
At home I have a garden that is completely organic, reuse my grey water, turn appliances off at power points, planted many trees (which seems out of vogue in my estate, recycle everything I can, use Greenbags for all shopping, and reuse items wherever I can. Im always on look out for more ideas. Your Blog has given me insight into my next journey.
Goodluck and I ll look forward to reading all about it.
Fellow readers please dont forget that every bit counts!

 
At 4:46 am, August 23, 2006, Blogger Phil Boote said...

Great log Babs.

Hope it all goes well.

 
At 11:26 am, August 23, 2006, Blogger debo said...

Hello,
I'm Deborah and I come from France. I read your article in the Independant yesterday and I found it very interesting.
I think you had a good idea by taking this trip like this but for me and for a lot of other people I think it is not really convenient because it is more expensive than by air and it takes a very long time.
I'm not an environmentalist but I want to protect the environment and I hope that other people will protect it too.
But I'm sure that you can't convince a lot of people to do like you or to live like you because now we are in the 21st century and people delight in comfort and use all electronic appliances which exist. That's why they won't change their way of life to another way that they would find worse.
However in this way I think you can make people realize there are lots of problems with pollution and that they can participate in the protection of the environment only by simple gestures, for instance switching off the television when they aren't watching it, closing the tap when they are brushing their teeth, switching off the light if they aren't in the room...
All those are very simple things to which I pay attention but I think there are still too many people who don't care about these.
So I would like you to know that I admire you even if I could never do that. I wish you a good journey and safe trip.
Bye.

 
At 6:35 am, August 24, 2006, Blogger Millerista said...

to all those that have posted before saying aviation is cleaner per passenger than taking buses, you are incorrect. Aviation is far more carbon intensive per passenger. Not to mention the additional greenhouse effect of releasing CO2 and water vapour so high in the atmosphere. As an illustration, Carbon dioxide emissions for journeys from London to Edinburgh by different transport modes are as follows - London to Edinburgh: plane 96.4, rail (modern high speed electric) 11.9, car 71, coach 9.2. (Figures show carbon dioxide emissions in kilogrammes per passenger per journey. Car emissions based on loading of 1.56 people per car.)Source: Department for Transport/National Atmospheric Emissions Inventory 2004.

I suspect the propensity of some on this blog to pour scorn on another's impressive stand stems from a desire to justify their own environmental hyprocrisy.

Good luck Babs. You got people talking and you reasons for doing it are sound. To others, check your facts first.

 
At 10:48 am, August 24, 2006, Blogger something_quite_attrocious said...

Gosh Babs you're so brave! Not only do you have the courage to act upon what you believe in, but you're going it alone through all those countries! Well, as my mom says, my hat's off to you. I wish you the best of luck. I'll be tracking your progress so keep us posted.

Love Alana xxx

P.s. Don't shave your legs til you get to Auz! You might need the extra warmth in Siberia! Insulate yourself!!! Lol xxx

 
At 12:30 pm, August 25, 2006, Blogger jonstarbuck said...

Hi Babs,
It seems I have missed your rapid rise to media superstardom (well it is Silly Season) as I have been off with Roustabout. Good luck to you Honey, ignore the Trolls (they are just spotty fat 13 y/o boys in Arkansas with nothing better to do but upset people) and anyone else with negative things to say; it is so much easier to point out the inconstancies in what someone is doing while not getting your own house in order, eh?
Jon.

 
At 12:34 pm, August 25, 2006, Blogger Spin Spotter said...

Cousin Robin here!

Best of luck with the trip.. will keep an eye on the blog for updates!


Enjoy it

Robin x

 
At 2:11 pm, August 25, 2006, Blogger amanda said...

Hi Babs
Respect to you for sparking so many minds. Three people that I'd not yet spoken to at my new workplace have come up to me, asked if I know you and tell me how inspiring you are - thought I better pass that on.
Also it ties in well with a discussion this morning about how four of us from Mid Wales will travel to Scotland for a training - (we've settled on lift sharing in one LPG car).
Hope the spotlight/media circus is drving you forward and not driving you crazy and have an amazing, wonderful trip.
Amanda x

 
At 8:47 pm, August 31, 2006, Blogger LarryB said...

oohhh ........to have the time..but some us work..need to travel..and cant live airy fairy lives..Think about the resourses of others that you will waste on your trip..food..space...

 
At 4:11 pm, September 03, 2006, Blogger Sam Gardiner said...

Hey Babs glad to see you finally away, your going to have a fucking ball. Just reading the comments is cracking me up, same old brave 'anonymous' cynicism and lame insults - to be expected, but some good stuff too, and trying to get people to think a bit is what this whole thing is about, so successful already basically. More people could do with putting their money where their mouth is and maybe doing a little bit of research along the way. tros fort.

 
At 4:50 pm, September 03, 2006, Blogger will said...

Got a great idea: why not send a video message and a card over the net? Then you don't need to go at all!!!

 
At 3:23 pm, September 07, 2006, Blogger Davcathmar said...

Babs!!! You're alive! very jealous of your Red Square visit. Never blogged before actually... not sure how tedious I can be if other people are reading...
Anyway, good luck with it. I've resisted texting... did you get a send off in the end?? Dav xxx

 
At 3:23 pm, September 07, 2006, Blogger Davcathmar said...

Babs!!! You're alive! very jealous of your Red Square visit. Never blogged before actually... not sure how tedious I can be if other people are reading...
Anyway, good luck with it. I've resisted texting... did you get a send off in the end?? Dav xxx

 

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