Ready to Make Your Surfing Lifestyle More Sustainable? Find Out How


Photo by Seavents

Sustainability is wildly popular right now, and for a good reason. As a surfer, you know the importance of sustainability and how important it is to take care of the oceans as a place that is not only a form of entertainment, but also a home to marine animals and biodiversity. 

Although, being a surfer doesn’t automatically make you “sustainable”. To ensure that you maintain a sustainable surfer lifestyle, being aware of what you can do and the changes you can make can be a gamechanger for our oceans! 

Here’s a list of actions you can take to adopt a sustainable surf lifestyle. 

Minimize (carbon intensive forms of) Travel & Research Where You Surf

Travel leaves behind a sizable impact on the environment, especially our oceans. Travel to and from a destination emits CO2, a large contributor to climate change. Global-warming induced changes in ocean temperatures combined with ocean acidification puts immense pressure on marine and terrestrial life, especially those that require temperature-sensitive hibernation

Choosing surf spots near you and limiting trips to and from far flung locations or even spending a longer time at the destination can help cut down your travel footprint. Once arrived at the destination, you can also opt to choose nearby beaches with local instructors. This can be done by doing research before you travel on the types of surf experiences you can take part in and the best surf spots. Make sure to also learn more about the local reefs, biodiversity and beach structures in the area to avoid causing harm to the marine environment and your surfboard!

Choose Sustainable Equipment

There are plenty of sustainable options for surfboards and other surf equipment like bodysuits, rashguards and waxes. You can opt for boards that are made sustainably and locally, or boards that are made from recycled materials or ones that are created by companies that focus on reducing their impact on the environment. Recycled plastic bodysuits or surf gear made from econyl are more popular than ever, providing fashion forward and sustainable SPF-protection at the same time. Surf wax that you use on your surfboard and non marine-safe sunscreen can impact the marine environment, but it doesn’t have to if you choose a wax that is eco-friendly and buy zinc or other mineral sunscreens. 

Sustainable shopping may take a little more time since it does involve learning more about the companies you’re buying from, but once you find the right companies, you won’t have to look so far when you need new equipment. 

Keep Equipment in Good Shape

Taking proper care of your surfboard and other equipment will help them last longer and the longer they last, the less waste that will be created. By learning how to care for your surfboard properly, you can make sure it continues to be in good shape for as long as possible. Something as simple as washing your board after a surf session and storing it properly in a surf bag could even make a huge difference in its longevity. If you only replace equipment when it’s truly necessary, your wallet will also thank you! 

Minimize and Properly Dispose of Single-Use Plastics

Once you have consciously selected your location, surf equipment and proper maintenance techniques, the next step to adapting to a sustainable surf lifestyle should be looking at how you consume single-use plastics. Single-use plastics, or plastics that are only used once before being thrown away or recycled, make up a large portion of the plastic pollution found in our oceans today. The truth is that a lot of single-use plastics do not end up being recycled, and can then end up in the water, where they’re mistaken for food by marine animals. This often has life-threatening consequences for sea life and sea birds. 

Cutting down on your use of single-use plastic can help minimize how much waste is produced. For the single-use plastics that you can’t stop using, make sure to dispose of them properly in your everyday life, especially when at the beach. If possible, adhere to the 3 Rs: reduce, reuse, recycle.

Help Organizations and Charities

There are a large number of organizations and charities dedicated to helping the environment. Plenty of them have causes that suit the surfer lifestyle. Discover the types of groups and events you can join to lend a helping hand (such as a beach cleanup). If you’d prefer to donate time instead of money, look into organizations that help the ocean or marine animals. These organizations are always looking for volunteers, so it can be an excellent way to get out of the house, do something fun, and help the environment at the same time. If you’re short on time, but still want to support ocean conservation, supporting a charity is also a nice way to give back. Do your research to find which groups align with your values and choose charities carefully to ensure any money donated is going where you want it to go. 

Leave Nothing Behind

The only thing that should be left when you leave the beach is your footprints. There’s nothing worse than surfing in an ocean filled with trash. Pay it forward to the next swimmers and surfers and prevent this from happening by paying extra attention to waste signage and protocols and properly dispose of throw away items that you take with you to the beach: cups, wrappers, and other items. Also, secure your items to keep them from flying away! Double check that everything goes with you when you leave, so nothing is left on the beach that could potentially end up in the water.

Want to take it a step further? Bring a trash bag and help clean up the beach before you leave. Even picking up a little bit of trash helps. 

Living a sustainable surfer lifestyle is not only possible, but it’s also a great idea if you are passionate about the ocean. All of the tips provided here are easy to do and can end up having a huge positive impact on the Earth while protecting the ocean you love.

Sea Going Green is a sustainable tourism consultancy working with clients in the marine tourism industry to make our oceans bluer and our tourism industry greener.

Ready to pave the way for sustainability in your marine or coastal area? Get in touch.

 As a surfer, you know the importance of sustainability and how important it
is to take care of the oceans as a place that is not only a form of
entertainment, but also a home to marine animals and biodiversity.

Here’s a list of actions you can take to adopt a sustainable surf
lifestyle.Read MoreSustainable LivingBlog – Sea Going Green


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