Today, we’re celebrating the profound legacy of Pete Seeger, on his 104th birthday! As a man, as an iconic folksinger and an environmental activist, and as the creator of a vessel as remarkable and enduring as the sloop Clearwater, he is an irreplaceable person.
Pete’s dedication to environmental and social justice has guided the organization through decades of activism through education. Due to Pete’s leadership around equity and inclusivity, Clearwater has served for 50 years as one of the only tall ships in the country to have a strong line of female and queer Captains and crew who found Clearwater as one of the only safe spaces with opportunities for advancement and respect in the industry. For 20 years, Clearwater has offered Youth Empowerment Programs to break down the barriers historically marginalized groups in the communities we serve face to the river and to sailing.
Our advocacy team has played a critical role in coalition building with concerned community members, state, and federal regulatory agencies in the fight for clean water; resulting in recent long awaited triumphs for Hudson Valley residents: the decommissioning of Indian Point Energy Center, marking the end of the Nuclear Power generation at the plant, aiding in delay of Holtec’s proposed release of radioactive water into the Hudson, and the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation’s denial of Danskammer proposed expansion of the fracked gas plant.
We find ourselves fighting harder than ever to preserve the legacy of Pete’s life’s work as we see the patterns of history repeating themselves as we walk these same roads, fight these same fights, and protest peacefully to protect our rights and our rivers. Pete Seeger has done more than inspire us, he taught us to use our voices, to unite, and to never stop fighting.