[CQ-Contest] Conservation Contesting
Matt & Carrie
superfly at tetonwireless.net
Sun Apr 1 12:24:26 EDT 2007
As a contester, I feel it is important to pause every so often and give
thanks that we have an ionosphere and its attendant planet. After all,
without the planet under the ionosphere, where would we erect our towers?
But,…..it appears that a plethora of problems awaits us, with the earth only
years away from warming to the point where among other hazards, aluminum can
and will melt. With this in mind and to preserve the hobby as we now it, I
believe we need to begin doing our part in preventing global warming.
It has been shown that the temperature at the northpole has increased as
much as 0.00000216 degrees C on CQWW and other DX contest weekends. The SSB
DX contests due to the nature of the mode do not appear to show as large an
increase in polar temperatures as CW DX contests, but they are still
detrimental. It stands to reason that RTTY is the worst offender because of
the higher duty cycle and should be kept to a minimum.
The following is a list of things we as contesters can do to help abate the
1) Do not point your stack of monster yagis across any polar path(s). There
are plenty of skew paths that should still have audible signal levels.
2) The above goes for low tribanders as well.
3) Orient any dipole antennas in an east-west broadside configuration to
minimize polar radiation patterns.
4) Keep the number of radials on any vertical systems to a minimum to avoid
rf concentrations on the polar horizons.
5) Contest/Dxpeditions should refuse to work areas of the world that are
along a polar path from the DX location (unless they can determine that the
signal is coming in via a non-polar path).
6) Power should be turned down to the legal limit at all times regardless of
7) Make attempts to keep your signals to just one hop. Every hop the RF
takes heats the ground at the “hop-point” just that much more.
8) Regarding VHF contests, if you notice a double hop opening. Turn off the
rig and come back later. (see #9 above).
9) ALL contest stations, including the large multis should use S&P tactics
10) Any station caught CQing should be blacklisted as a non-friend of the
I believe we can continue to enjoy our hobby and feel good about it at the
same time. But, we must act NOW. These simple measures, if followed, will
allow our children and our children’s children to enjoy what we all have
taken for granted for much too long.
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