1. Keep the beaches clean
This might seem obvious, but it is extremely important to clean up after yourself when you visit the beach. Plastic pollution is one of the biggest problems faced by our oceans. it is particularly dangerous as plastic is not biodegradable. It can stay in the ocean for years, harming marine life and ocean environments. According to a recent study, it is estimated that around 19 billion pounds of plastic are dumped in the ocean each year. Making a habit of taking your rubbish with you when you leave the beach can make a difference to the ocean pollution problem. An easy way to improve the quality of beaches is to Take 3 pieces of rubbish with you when you leave. Simple and effective.
2.Use eco-friendly boards and accessories
It is little known fact that many surf products can cause damage to the ocean and the environment. Luckily, there are a variety of eco-friendly surf products out there. Stores like Surfing Green and Ecostoke (part of the Surfrider Foundation’s Gold Coast branch) stock heaps of eco friendly products, such as wax, wetsuits and boards. If you’re in the market for a new board, the Ecoboard project names manufacturers like Firewire and Samsara as the best brands for eco-friendly boards. If you’re looking for an eco friendly fin, look no further than FiveOceans. The ecoFin is a performance surf fin that is made from recycled ocean waste.
The newest addition to mention is the neoprene-free wetsuit by Patagonia. As usual they’ve done a great job in material research and development. Yulex is based on natural rubber and some more magic
Supporting companies and organisations that produce eco-friendly products is an important as it raises awareness of sustainability in the surf community.
3. Travel to beaches sustainably
Taking a sustainable surf trip can start as soon as you get in your car. Travel to the beach can make a huge environmental impact, so why not pick an eco-friendly way to travel? There are heaps of options! Why not pack your car, round up a few mates and carpool to the beach! Strapping your board to your car is easy, and you’ll have a great time road ripping with your mates. If you’re lucky enough to live close to the beach, why not bike it? There are racks available to mount your board to your bike. Another easy option is to investigate public transport options in your area. Busses and trains are an affordable option, and are super eco-friendly. If you’re flying to your surf destination of choice, be sure to choose an eco friendly airline. Getting to the beach the right way is a great start to sustainable surfing.
4. Stay eco-conscious out of the water
There are heaps of small ways to improve your lifestyle out of the water. Starting in your home and daily life, there are so many ways for you to save the ocean! Firstly, always follow the 3 Rs: Reduce, reuse and recycle. If you reduce your waste and recycle the waste that you do create, you can improve the sustainability of your lifestyle. Many waste products can be easily repurposed or reused, so consider this before you reach for the bins. It is important to understand the recycling chain so that when you do recycle you can recycle right. Plastic is one of the greatest contributors to ocean waste, so why not reduce your plastic use? Try the Plastic Free Challenge or simply replace plastic products in your home with glass or metal alternatives.
5. Support other organisations that are saving the ocean
Once you’ve made changes to your surf and lifestyle habits, why not support others who are doing the same thing? There are thousands of surf conservation organisations that are all doing a great job of saving our oceans. One of our favourites is the Surfrider Foundation, which is taking steps to change the surf community both locally and globally. Check their website to find your local chapter. Sustainable Surf is doing some great work to change surf culture to emphasise ocean protection. They are encouraging individuals and organizations to make a difference towards ocean conservation. Re-Rip is a organization that aims to keep surfboards out of landfills. They are raising awareness about sustainability in the surf industry, while providing practical solutions for recycling boards and reducing surf waste. All of these organizations prove that there are so many ways to save our oceans! Awareness is the first step, so spread the word about ocean conservation.
Stay eco, Aloha!