Surfers target california with environmental campaign

23 Sep 2011 0 Share

A group of environmental activists led by professional free surfer, Dave Rastovich, 31, (Byron Bay, NSW, Australia) is preparing to embark on a one month kayaking and surfing odyssey down the Californian coast to draw awareness to marine and coastal issues, as well as highlight the annual migration of the endangered grey whale population.

More than 20 stops will be included in the 260-mile (418-kilometer) odyssey dubbed “TransparentSea” which will commence north of Santa Barbara on September 29th and is scheduled to conclude at the USA/Mexico border. The group will then continue overland on October 25th to the grey whale’s mating and calving lagoons located in Baja California, Mexico.

It’s the second such journey for Rastovich and the “Surfers for Cetaceans” movement he co-founded; in 2009 he helped initiate a similar 700km (434 mile), 36 day campaign down Australia’s Eastern Seaboard which successfully highlighted the plight of the Humpback Whales and raised awareness of coastal pollution issues while engaging local communities.

Joining “Rasta” on his TransparentSea USA campaign is respected surfer, artist and activist Chris Del Moro (San Diego, CA, USA), Australian musician Will Conner, world-renowned surf and water photographer Hilton Dawe and professional women’s longboard champion Lauren Hill (FL, USA).

Additionally, a rotating roster of like-minded special guests will lend their time, and voices, to the cause.

Assisted only by the wind and waves, Rasta and his cohorts will paddle the entire distance in single-seat kayaks, pulling ashore to rest, engage with local communities and conditions permitting - take advantage of the local surf.

Four major locations and causes have been identified among the scheduled stops along the Californian coast route. They are:

Santa Barbara Maritime Museum – September 29th
(Environmental Defense Center)
Includes TransparentSea launch party: Tickets available
http://www.wantickets.com/Events/94397/BILLABONG-TRANSPARENTSEA-VOYAGE/

TRANSPARENTSEA VOYAGE L.A.
Malibu Inn, Malibu – October 7th
(Save Malibu Lagoon)

TRANSPARENTSEA VOYAGE O.C.
Dana Point, Ocean Institute, October 16th
(Ocean Institute Education Program)

TRANSPARENTSEA VOYAGE S.D.
Venue TBC - October 23rd
(NRDC Acoustic Pollution Issues)

At each location, the group will engage local community campaigners and highlight key areas of environmental concern. Discussion forums and education seminars will take place, along with live music, film screenings and silent art auctions featuring the work of some of the world’s most recognised surfer-artists including Andy Davis, Chris Del Moro, Howie Cooke and Tyler Warren.

In addition, beach clean-ups will be undertaken at various locations along the route in collaboration with Surfrider Foundation. Utilising an initiative of Australian based coast-care group, Tangaroa Blue, all rubbish that is collected will be collated, counted and the data recorded to a marine debris database.

“I’m really excited about the upcoming second TransparentSea voyage,” explained Rastovich.

“Previous S4C (Surfers for Cetaceans) campaigns have focused on specific groups of people and industry that directly hunt vulnerable sea life. This journey is more about focusing on our collective impact. It’s about shining a light on the health and future of the animals and coastal ecosystems that exist along one of the most densely populated and busy coastlines in the world.

“California is a major surf industry hub, and also where a lot of surfers take active roles in defending their coast so it is a great privilege for our group to be able to join in those efforts and further the movement.”

For more information on TransparentSea including detailed route information and key dates, http://transparentseavoyage.com/events

For bio information on the TransparentSea participants and crew, http://transparentseavoyage.com/crew

Want to contribute or volunteer? http://transparentseavoyage.com/action

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