6 simple things Surfers can do to protect our oceans from plastic pollution
With 8 million tonnes of plastic being dumped into our oceans each year, it’s time we all took responsibility for the future of our planet, our oceans and the creatures that live within it. Not only do I want to swim and surf in clean oceans now, but I want to ensure we have healthy oceans for our next generation of ocean lovers.
Do you want to be surfing in a plastic soup?
The majority of trash found on our beaches are plastics designed to be used once and thrown away. Single-use plastics like drink bottles, food packaging, shopping bags, straws, takeaway coffee cups and lids are the top items found during beach clean ups.
Discarded plastic can be found in all of our world’s oceans. The waves, currents, sun and weather all play a part in breaking down these plastics into tiny pieces called micro plastics. These tiny pieces of plastic don’t go away or biodegrade, they float in our oceans forever. Micro plastics can also make their way into your food chain by marine life that have mistaken them for food.
Plastic pollution is choking your playground. What would your life be like without the ocean?
As ocean lovers we have such a great connection with the deep blue that when we see it trashed and littered with plastic it can be pretty upsetting. The ocean gives us so much joy – it’s our duty to take care of it as our way of saying thank you and to protect what we love.
If we as surfers and ocean lovers don’t protect our oceans and it’s beautiful creatures who will?
Here are 6 simple steps that surfers can do to protect our oceans from plastic pollution.
1. Refuse single-use plastics: Single-use plastics are the types of plastic we use once and throw away. Single-use plastics are notorious for finding their way into our oceans and washing up on our beaches. Plastic drink bottles, plastic bags, lolly wrappers, takeaway coffee cups and lids, chip packets, these are all single-use plastics. The less we use the less we have to lose.
2. Get yourself some reusables: Reusable products are fun, stylish and good for our oceans. I don’t leave my house without my reusable coffee cup, reusable drink bottle and reusable bag. I will also throw in a stainless steel straw, container and bamboo cutlery. Check out The Eco Collection for my favourite reusable products.
3. Choose ocean friendly products: Research the brands you currently use, what are their business ethics? Do they make their products using sustainable practices and use natural/low toxic ingredients? Not only is it better for our oceans, it’s a healthier choice for your body too. Start with getting some organic surf wax and a natural/organic sunscreen.
4. Take 3 for the sea: The Take 3 message is simple, take 3 pieces of rubbish with you when you leave the beach, waterway or anywhere. By doing this you are making a difference to the health of our oceans. If you see some trash while you’re out surfing, stick it under your bikini strap or in your wetsuit. Once you get to shore you can pop it in the bin.
You can also join us for #take3for365 . This is a challenge to take 3 pieces of rubbish from our envionment for 365 days. It started on the 1st of May 2016 (but you can join up anytime) head on over to the facebook group to join in the fun and find out more.
5. Say no to microbeads: Are you unknowingly polluting our oceans with your beauty products? Your face scrub alone could contain as many as 350,000 plastic microbeads per tube. These beads are washed straight down the drain and into our oceans. Check the ingredients list of your face scrub, body wash and toothpaste for polyethylene (PE) and polypropylene (PP) if it contains either of those then it’s full of micro pieces of plastic.
6. Spread the message: Tell your friends and family about ocean pollution and how doing these simple steps can make a difference. Join like-minded community groups or create your own beach clean up crew.
So there you have it, 6 simple steps surfers can do to protect our oceans from plastic pollution.
What step will you start with? By doing these steps you will be creating healthier oceans, reduce ocean pollution and enjoy your surfing so much more knowing you are making a huge difference.
You have got this ocean lover, I know our oceans are in good hands.
**These tips were originally printed in the Sunshine Surf Girls Magazine, to get your Free copy visit their website or find a stockist near you. SSG Mag is Australia’s only surfing magazine for women.
Share the Love: