Surfrider Foundation at the Rip Curl Pro Tofino

Surfrider was there for the action-packed Rip Curl Pro event, in Tofino BC, June 9 & 10, 2012. We raised funds through a combination of on-site food sales, raffles, party tickets and donations. We had a chance to engage with the Pacific Rim surf community and hosted daily beach cleanups of Cox Bay with partner SPY during the event.

While there, we posed the question - why do you love your beach? Enjoy this video of the event made by Shaun and Devon Finn at FINNesse Media, with music by Warless.

Big thanks to Rip Curl, the Long Beach Lodge & Resort, SPY, and our team of volunteers for doing so much to make Surfrider's participation in the 6th annual Rip Curl Pro Tofino such a success.

One Beach, a love story

Know what you love, and protect what you love.  For those who missed it, this was the takeaway from the screening of Jason Baffa’s One Beach, at last month’s Projecting Change Film Festival. Surfrider Vancouver was there, with a info table outside and chapter Vice Chair Liz Macdonald weighing in during the post-film panel discussion, which also included Edward Gregr, Marine Ecologist, and Jill Dwyer, Manager of the Great Canadian Shoreline Cleanup.

One Beach the film

Produced with the support of longtime Surfrider amigos Barefoot Wines, One Beach is a splashy little environmental flick about beach lovers and loving beaches. The film speaks in earnest to the ever-growing planetary mess of waste and plastic debris flooding our waterways and coastlines. But true to Surfrider ethos, instead of looking down, the film charges this weighty subject with relentless optimism.

One Beach is all about transformation and visible solutions. It’s 24 minutes of positive action-taking that will absolutely motivate you to get outside and love your beach.

We visit artists Richard and Judith Selby Lang, who scavenge the California coast cleaning up debris and junk, then return to the studio to elevate their found materials into fine art. Florida fashion designer Kim De Vries turns her creative attentions to making jewelry out of worn plastics she recovers from beaches. And there’s Tim Silverman, who builds sustainable surfboards and shows us how he’s integrating beach scraps into his designs. Also great clips of Kevin Cunningham, of Australia’s Take3 Clean Beach Initiative, who tells of his travels to the Pacific gyres and how vital it is that we take ownership of our beaches and waters.

There’s a host of neat ideas coming out of these interviews.

Big thinker, and Surfrider Foundation CEO, Jim Moriarty  features prominently. Jim shares some spirited philosophy on the Surfrider mission and praises the participatory momentum of efforts around the globe. In Brazil, bystanders at beach cleanups can’t help but get involved when the events take on a festive mood - beach parties, complete with live music. How do you resist that?

Jim breaks things down into a matter of love:

“If I love this, I should care for it. That’s the essence of Surfrider; protection and  enjoyment of what we love: the coast.” 

Strong on the inspirational pep talk, and perhaps not your typical environmental doc, the essence of the film  is empowerment and passion. It is colourful and poetic, with a simple message: we’re all implicated, and we all have the power to do something about it.

“How are you going to take action? We know action happens when you’re in love. It’s just the truth of the world. You don’t do things out of fear. The long term action comes when you’re in love."

You can watch One Beach online!  Quite possibly something you’ll be wanting to share.

What goes into the ocean, goes into you.


Rise Above Plastics sushi adCraving a little sushi?

What goes into the ocean, goes into you, as this ad by Portland agency Pollinate brilliantly illustrates.

Easily mistaken for food, marine plastic – which comes primarily from land-based sources - is ingested by fish and ocean mammals.

What was once our food packaging may soon be our meal.

Why should we be concerned? Beyond the immediate or short-term effects to the fish, such as discomfort, malnourishment or starvation, plastic in the ocean concentrates and carries persistent organic pollutants such as DDT, PCBs, mercury and other toxins.

A study by Algalita Marine Research Foundation of the North Pacific Central Gyre in 2008 found that approximately 35% of the fish studied had ingested plastic, averaging 2.1 pieces per fish.

The ocean is the single largest source of the world’s protein. Contamination of the ocean is thus a contamination of ourselves.

We do not yet know with certainty what effects these pollutants will have on human health as they travel up the food chain. However, with BPA (a common chemical additive to plastic packaging) having recently been found to interfere with reproductive development and also linked to cardiovascular disease, diabetes, and obesity, it seems unlikely we won’t be negatively affected by these pollutants now becoming ubiquitous in the marine environment.

Through our Rise Above Plastics program, we raise awareness in Vancouver for these and other detrimental effects caused by plastic pollution.  We advocate for a reduction in single use plastics and promote awareness for simple ways everyone can reduce their plastic footprint.

To learn more or to get involved with our Rise Above Plastics committee, contact us at


Coast Mountain Culture magazine is not only eye candy for ocean and mountain types, it's also free at over 150 locations around the Pacific Northwest.

Coast Mountain Culture is generously promoting Surfrider Vancouver with the inclusion of our full page Rise Above Plastics ad in this issue.