You would think surfers are some of the most eco-friendly people out there. (NOT) Although there are many surfers who give back (Rob Machado) and surf shops are starting to stock Eco Friendly surfing gear, it may be a challenge for surfers the world over to find surfing gear that is sustainable.
An online company and for me a local company, Encinitas, California called Enviro Surfer (www. GreenSurfShop.com) is addressing the global need for Eco Friendly Surfing. They are also giving back 5% of their proceeds to what they call the ‘Enviro Spotlight’ cause.
Just looking at the products, they carry Patagonia, one of the first ‘environmental’ sports apparel companies in the world, Sanuk, Ocean Minded show, Moka Shoes, made with Recycled rubber and foam, Organic clothing from companies as Hippy Tree.
For those of us, who are leery of greenwashing, I really like the Envirobadge they put with each product. It lets us know what we are buying and why we should buy the product. Nice touch.
It’s pretty simple to see the environmental impacts of something derived from petroleum. The surf industry is hooked on petroleum based products and as one can imagine, this all begins with oil exploration and drilling. On top of that, the crude oil discovered must then be transported, adding for an even higher risk of a spill. By purchasing Matuse Wetsuits derived from the limestone based Geoprene, you are helping the surf industry to ease up on its heavy reliance on petroleum.
The main environmental benefit behind Rainbow Fin Company’s efforts to create a line of fins out of bamboo revolves largely around bamboo’s ability to grow and spread quickly. In some cases it can grow three to four feet per day without the need for fertilizers, pesticides or much water. A bamboo grove also releases some 35 percent more oxygen into the air than a similar-sized stand of trees, and it matures (and can be replanted) within seven years (compared to 30-50 years for a stand of trees), helping to improve soil conditions and prevent erosion along the way. Bamboo is so fast-growing that it can yield 20 times more timber than trees on the same area.
I will tell you what I love best, is the Reducing and Recycling of Shipping. They are reusing slightly ‘used’ boxes for orders. How cool is that. Too many companies worry about their ‘image’ and millions of pounds of cardboard go into landfills. At least we know they are practicing what they preach. For consumers, all those ‘brand new boxes’ cost you extra money, cardboard boxes are not free.
I grew up with surfers, love watching surfing and am a little disgusted with surfers who do not respect the beaches. But thanks to companies like EnviroSurf, we can have cleaner beaches, more educated surfers and access to more sustainable surfing products.