Can Surfing Change the World?



By Stella Beador

Mother Nature provides the perfect waves for us, but how can we ever return the favor? This article will discuss how surfing impacts with the environment.

As a surfer, I know not to go surfing after it has rained in southern California because the water is so dirty and may cause many illnesses or infections. From fevers to stomach pains and rashes etc., this can all be caused by a disgusting runoff from draining systems. After it’s rained, most surfers wait 72 hours to get back in the water due to the pollution in the runoff that gets dumped into our local beaches. “It can cause a whole range of illnesses. The most common is the classic gastrointestinal illness similar to Montezuma’s revenge from drinking bad water in Mexico. There are some people who have gotten a really nasty version of streptococcus, which they call flesh-eating bacteria. There is also exposure to toxins that don’t cause acute illnesses, but aren’t really good for you over time. You should stay out of the water for 72 hours largely because most of the bacteria that get washed out can’t survive longer than that.” explains Nelson from the surf rider foundation. The surf rider foundation is trying to encourage new technologies to try and limit impacts of pollution. Most man made pollutants that reach the ocean include pesticides, herbicides, chemical fertilizers, detergents, oil, sewage, plastics and other solids. Solid waste like bags, foam, and other items dumped into the ocean by land or by ships at sea are frequently consumed by marine animals, fish, and birds that mistake it for food. Not only is this pollution effecting our surfers world, it’s also effecting the creatures that live in these oceans.

As a result, I think twice before littering because eventually, that little piece of trash will harm sea life or a human’s health. How can you help? Plastics that end up in the ocean could end up killing tens of thousands marine life in a year. To limit your impact, carry a reusable water bottle, store foods in containers, bring your own reusable bag when shopping, and recycle whenever possible. This example is just one of the many things you can do to save the ocean. Surfing is a very fun sport to do and I encourage everyone to try it once in their life.

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