MV Taitu is Greenpeace NZ's crowdfunded boat.
Taitu is a verb meaning to hinder, impede, deter, and thwart an enemy. As a name for a boat it references the sea (Tai) and Tu means standing, strength, warrior spirit.
MV Taitu is Greenpeace NZ's new crowdfunded boat. It was purchased in March 2017 following a crowdfunding campaign. It now wears the rainbow stripes and follows in a long tradition of similar Greenpeace vessels and crazy dreams and protest at sea stretching back some 40 years.
In 1971 a ragtag bunch of dreamers took a rusty old boat called the Phyllis Cormack into a nuclear test zone in Amchitka, Alaska. Against all odds they confronted a nuclear superpower that threatened catastrophe. They didn’t stop the bomb, but their bold action sparked the global movement that is Greenpeace today.
Now climate change threatens our survival. Yet the oil industry is recklessly searching for new oil in the deep seas off New Zealand’s Wairarapa coast. A greedy search for oil the world can’t afford to burn. With The Amazon Warrior, AKA ‘The Beast’, the biggest seismic ship in the world, Statoil and Chevron are blasting the ocean, every 8 seconds, day and night.
We’ve been out 50 nautical miles to confront The Beast in our small inflatable boat the Margaret Mahy. It was a long and bruising trip cut short by bad weather, but we delivered a message on behalf of almost 80,000 New Zealanders who oppose oil exploration and seismic blasting.
But to effectively continue our protest action we needed a bigger boat. So we went out to New Zealanders with an appeal to help us buy a bigger boat and the response was phenomenal. We raised almost $100,000 in only seven days and bought the MV Friendship. And since it was a crowdfunded boat we thought it only fitting that it should have a crowdsourced name. So we went out again for suggestions and then asked for a vote on the shortlist. The name Taitu was chosen.
A fitting name for the newest member of the Greenpeace fleet!
Previously called Friendship, Taitu is a kauri hulled ex-pilot boat built in Whangaroa which worked in Wellington as a pilot boat and in the Marlborough Sounds delivering the post, and more recently taking tours in the area.