Watching the Surfers the other day- I started reflecting on the impact of surfing on the environment. Broken leashes, lost shoes, towels, clothing, bottles, waxes and broken boards are leftover from surfers. Plus avid surfers travel-! Indonesia, Panama, Costa Rica, Ecuador, Peru to name just a few countries, where I have been, which offer surfing Hot Spots.
- Surfers are good for World Economy: They buy, souvenirs, surf gear, equipment, film, boat rentals. Most of these are bought from small mom and pop businesses, who in turn put their earning back into the local economy.
- Surfing- once in the water- is not dependent on oil.
- Surf Travel- the seach for the perfect wave uses alot of carbon
- Surf Accessories- including wetsuits, waxes use oil
- Surfing Litter- can harm harm the environment.
Due to polluted water- surfers are prime candidates to catch the most common diseases for swimming in sewage: gastroenteritis (often resulting in diarrhoea and vomiting) or ear, nose and throat infections. Also, pathogens in sewage such as Hepatitis A and E. coli 0157 can cause much more serious, potentially life threatening, illnesses.
Surfers proably more so than non surfers are or should be more aware of ocean pollution. After all, they are the ones who are drifting in seas of plastic and bottles in the water. That said, more and more surf companies are becoming involved in ‘green solutions’ for surfers.
- Eco Surfing- Australia-‘ Taken practical action too by setting up the ECO Foundation, a trust that invests in research to find ways to resist the climate change we are all experiencing on our planet. Every person who takes an ECO lesson has part of their fees contributed to this important research to find ways to harness new energy systems that reduce the impact of greenhouse warming. That’s what ECO stands for.
- SD Surf Eco- (San Diego, CA) Surf School- combined forces with Surfrider for beach cleanups. Surf eCo is currently helping out with Nature Conservancy’s Plant-a-Billion Campaign in the Brazilian Rainforest.Surf eCo strives to teach surfers about the importance of taking care of the environment. By providing surfers with information about eco-friendly surf products and ways to help the environment, Surf eCo hopes that surfers will take a proactive approach in saving the environment so that future generations will also be able to enjoy the beauty of nature.
- Balsa Tribe Surfboards (Ecuador) “We found sustainable balsa plantations, built workshops and ovens, drafted papers, met with Amazonian Indians, designed logos, boards, shapes, and transport systems. Within the complex globalizing world, we were striking a balance between people and places, separated by thousands of miles, cultures, and languages. Needs began to align and we found ourselves stepping into an all too elusive paradigm of business… One in which everyone, earth included, wins. Delicately, we were recreating an ultimate truth in the form of a business. This is the truth and integrity we shape into every board that leaves our workshop. Pairing the highest quality materials and balsa with hands that have worked exclusively with this wood from 20 to 35 years under the guidance of Skip Andres Kozminski (who has become a godfather, if not a saint, of balsa shaping), we are proud to bring you some of the finest works of art in the water…
- Bisect Australia Surfboard that is going to redefine longboard surf travel into the future! Offer 2 piece longboards that perform like any other modern epoxy surfboard but with the unique advantage of being able to be separated into two easy to manage pieces. The board packs neatly into its own airline friendly custom bag for hassle free travel. Long board can be locked in the car (or boot) for added security.
- Body Glove- (CA) Body Glove will continue to expand the Eco line of products. The Eco product series goal is to incorporate, wherever reasonably possible, renewable, recycled, sustainable and/or organic materials to produce unique and high performance product. Check out the growing list of Eco Productsdy Glove will continue to support local and international environmental organizations such as Reef Check, Surfrider Foundation, and Heal the Bay.
- Country Feeling Surfboards (Hawaii) Country Feeling Surfboards celebrates the nature that surrounds us with surfboards made with environmentally friendly materials: soy-based and sugar-based foams; deck inlays made from hemp, organic cotton, bamboo and silk; and resin that is catalyzed by the sun.
- Grain Surfboards- (Maine) committed to building, promoting and riding surfboards that have less impact on the environment and more impact on surfing. The Grain tradition includes reducing the impact of surfboard production by using locally harvested, sustainable-yield wood products, creatively reducing or reusing any waste left over, and developing techniques for employing greener materials.
- Green Wave Eco-Surf Company )Florida) sells products exclusively from ecologically and environmentally responsible companies, such as Planet Earth Green Label, Sector 9, and Matunas Biodegradable Surf Wax. Green Wave offers organic clothing and gear that are ecologically friendly for the user and the places they travel. (sorry the link is broken)
- Matuse– Wetsuits Wetsuits made of Geoprene which is based for 99,7% on limestone instead of petroleum products.
- Matunas Wax (Sunset Beach, CA) Non Toxic biodegradable Wax. Made entirely from local California products. Labels are made from recycled materials and use soy bean ink.
- Ocean Green- Ocean Green EcoFoil blanks are a hollow balsa construction. The wood is sourced in Nicaragua from sustainably managed forests and worked by carpenters and shapers under Fair Trade conditions. OG has planted over 5,000 trees and aims to increase this yearly, providing a natural take up of CO.Standard construction uses non-biodegradable fibreglass cloth. We replace this with 100% biodegradable Organic Hemp or Cotton.
- Patagonia (CA) The Granddaddy of all Green Sport Equipment and Products!- Patagonia wetsuits use the highest quality neoprene made from limestone instead of petroleum-based ingredients. It has a 98% higher closed cell ratio than other neoprene, which adds dead air space and with it, warmth. Wetsuits are lined with merino wool blended with recycled polyester.
- Surfing Green (Australia)
- Treehugger Surf Wax- Australia) Treehugger Surf Wax has been created with the environmentally conscious surfer in mind. It contains no petroleum by-products, harsh chemicals or synthetic materials – just good old natural, sustainable and biodegradable ingredients.
- Wave Tribe (Ventura, CA) “Wave Tribe is learning as we go, we are a stoked company of surf crazed human being looking to do the right thing in a market place driven by big brands, corporate companies, and small margins. Like everyone else we are making our product overseas, but we are doing it differently. Wave Tribe is committed to using sustainable materials and partners with companies that maintain an ethical work environment— ‘we’ as consumers have forced companies to deliver lower and lower priced products. The reality is how a purchase impacts ones wallet is more decisive than how the product influences the environment. “
- Eco Savvy Surf Shop cosavvysurfshop.com takes special care to seek out and team up with companies who provide 100% reliable, rider tested, eco-friendly surf products, and accessories designed to inflict little harm on the environment.
- Drift Magazine- Free Online Surf (no paper) magazine
- The Surfers Path- You can indulge in our magazine with a clear conscience. The Surfer’s Path is the first truly “green” surf magazine. It’s printed on 100-percent post-consumer recycled paper (processed without chlorine bleach) with non-GMO soy inks. It was a move that – despite considerable extra expense – we simply had to make.
Green Resources and Organizations –
- EcoSurf Project: http://www.ecosurfproject.org
- Phoresia: http://www.phoresia.org At phoresia.org, our intention is to strip surfing back down to its most elemental form; to highlight the symbiotic relationship that humans share with waves and to do so in a way that encourages the protection of our precious natural environment.
- 70percent: http://www.70percent.org/blog/70percent was built to help small groups of friends share knowledge built from years of studying and riding waves and to promote water quality awareness.
- Save the Waves Coalition– Save the Waves is an environmental coalition dedicated to preserving the world’s surf spots and their surrounding environments. Our goal is to preserve and protect surfing locations around the planet and to educate the public about their value. Save the Waves works in partnership with local communities, foreign and national governments, as well as other conservation groups to prevent coastal development from entering the surf zone.
- Surfrider Foundation
- Surfers Against Sewage campaign for clean, safe recreational water, free from sewage effluents, toxic chemicals, nuclear waste and marine litter.
- Surfers for Cetaceans. Surfers for Cetaceans calls on surfers everywhere to support the conservation and protection of whales and dolphins and other marine wildlife, to protest whaling and the killing of threatened and endangered species, and to end the pollution of our marine environment.
- Sea Shepard Conservation Society– Established in 1977, Sea Shepherd Conservation Society (SSCS) is an international non-profit, marine wildlife conservation organization. Our mission is to end the destruction of habitat and slaughter of wildlife in the world’s oceans in order to conserve and protect ecosystems and species.
- Surfers Environmental Alliance SEA was founded by a surfers who wanted to do something to protect the ocean, beaches and coastlines, and keep this planet a safe place to surf. If you own a surfboard, enjoy the beauty of the ocean, or if you are concerned about preserving our ocean planet, get involved with SEA.