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Trestles Toll Road: The Battle Continues

Monday, July 7th, 2008

trestlesAlthough the fight to keep the highly controversial 241 Toll Road extension has been going for years and has at times seemed endless, those who oppose the project don’t appear to be backing off any time soon.

Last week the Secretary of Commerce announced that a public hearing regarding the proposed extension is to take place July 25 at the Bren Center on the campus of UC Irvine. This comes on the heels of what was a major victory for Trestles, San Onofre State Park, and all those who oppose the development of the proposed toll road when the California Coastal Commission voted 8-2 against the project. This hearing marks the next battle between the Transportation Corridor Authority and opponents over the continuation of the road, which would essentially lead to the closure of the popular campgrounds at San Onofre State Park as well as putting surrounding breaks, including Trestles, at great risk.

For those who have yet to see it, there was a beautiful section done covering the Trestles battle in the most recent Teton Gravity Research film – Out There. It illustrated the importance of keeping this stretch of coast as is and covered why this is such a vital battle for us to become involved in. Over 3,000 strong showed at Wyland Hall at the Del Mar Fairgrounds to let there voices be heard. This time around there are hopes for an even larger showing. “We are looking forward to the Department of Commerce hearing,” says Mark Rauscher, Assistant Environmental Director for the Surfrider Foundation. “The Department of Commerce has already heard from the experts, now it is time for them to hear directly from the public how the TCA’s proposed alignment for the Foothill-South Toll Road is fundamentally flawed.”

The Surfrider Foundation has been at the forefront of this battle from the beginning. They, along with other groups opposing the Toll Road extension, will be running busses to transport supporters to and from the hearing.

This is truly a battle of epic proportions. It may very well set a precedent for years to come and for that reason is so important to become involved in. If you would like to check out more information you can check out savetrestles.org or surfrider.org.

Posted in Surfing | No Comments »

Jack Johnson and Surfrider Continue to Lead the Way

Tuesday, June 17th, 2008

jack johnson liveWith so much going against us as we fight against the demise of our environment, it’s both motivating and inspiring to watch natural leaders rise up and open paths for those who are new to this battle. The massive success of Jack Johnson’s annual Kokua Festival has led to a partnership with Surfrider Foundation as one of a select group of non-profit organizations chosen by Jack to participate in his 2008 world tour and help launch his All At Once campaign.

The All At Once campaign and online community take a page out of the Kokua Festival by bridging the gap between Jack’s fans and local, as well as national, organizations who make saving the environment their life’s work. Surfrider CEO Jim Moriarty has coined the term “on-ramp” when describing methods to get the average joe like many of us onboard and passionate about doing what we can to help. Creating these on-ramps is what the All At Once campaign is all about. The A.A.O. campaign puts concert-goers face to face with these organizations in order to provide steps of environmental actions they can take, both large and small. Once the show is over, the online community will ensure the work will continue by providing a network for those who are already involved to stay connected with those just getting their feet wet.

“I can’t think of a better reason to put on a concert than to bring people together to create positive change,” said Johnson. “With this year’s tour we are bringing together all of our resources All At Once to give back to each community that we visit.”

Jack’s continued efforts to aid in this cause are remarkable and open up the door for so many who otherwise may not know where to start. This partnership with Surfrider is ideal and goes to show that the surfing community as a whole are leading the way when it comes to cultivating the culture of global activism.

If you’re searching for an on-ramp, the All At Once campaign is a perfect way to get onboard.

Posted in Surfing | No Comments »

Going Green for Dummies

Wednesday, April 30th, 2008

plastic in oceanThere are few communities who have taken a stand and gone to the lengths that the surfing community has when it comes to making a difference in our rapidly deteriorating environment, in particular the ocean. It has become a movement, yet there is still so much more that needs to be done.

I’m guessing there are quite a few like myself who know they need to do more when it comes to preserving the earth, we just may need a little guidance to get us going more toward that direction. Who better to give us a push down the right path than Surfrider CEO, and inspiration to us all, Jim Moriarty.

Moriarty has dedicated his life to being on the front lines on this battle against those who would take the very last breath from this beautiful planet. His, as well as the tireless efforts of all at Surfrider are truly amazing.

For us who need the aforementioned push in the right direction, I decided to ask Mr. Moriarty what some basic steps would be that all of us could take to help in preserving the ocean for generations to come. He kindly provided me with this very interesting ‘beginners guide to going green (PDF),’ and had this to say when asked what one basic effort he would recommend all of us take when trying to improve on our lackluster environmental habits – “If you ever do one thing, never…ever buy or accept another plastic water bottle as that bottle will most likely never be recycled and the largest pollutant in the ocean is plastics.”

A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step, and without a doubt this is a step that all of us can take.

surfrider foundation

Posted in Surfing | 6 Comments »

Trestles Battle Not Over

Wednesday, April 2nd, 2008

trestlesMy, how those bureaucracies can be sneaky little buggers!

After February’s victory over the proposed Trestles toll road, I kind of put that issue on the backburner. And to be honest, I really hadn’t thought too much about it until I began noticing ‘Save Trestles’ signs once again popping up around many of Southern California’s beach cities. After reading one of Jon Coen’s recent posts on EXPN, I now understand why.

Apparently the Transportation Corridor Agency has filed an appeal of the California Coastal Commission’s decision to deny the proposed project. I’m sure their hopes are that with this back-door approach they will quietly go about having this decision overturned. If that is the case, they are underestimating us in a big way.

In order to have another public hearing, the surf community has to write to the CCC to ask for a public hearing. Our friends at Surfrider have simplified that process, and you can let your voice be heard once again, or for the first time, by contacting Secretary Carlos Gutierrez here. Trestles is truly an icon. This is a battle that we simply cannot, and will not lose.

surfrider foundationtrestles

Posted in Surfing | 1 Comment »

Poo Water Blues: Help Keep the Ocean Clean

Saturday, March 29th, 2008

dirty beach ocean waterIt’s never a cool feeling to come away from a session feeling the way I felt(and feel) after surfing a break just north of Ponto in Carlsbad, Ca yesterday. The waves did their part, and aside from the moderate onshore flow creating some crumble, the 4-6ft surf was enjoyable as always. On the other hand the ocean and beach looked miserable, and I’m afraid they have left me feeling the same.

I wouldn’t consider myself a biologist by any stretch of even the wildest imagination. With that being said, it doesn’t really take one to know that the brown bubbly funk lining the shoreline is not anything that anyone, or anything for that matter, should be swimming in. With my eyes on the incoming sets and blinded by anticipation I consciously ignored the nastiness washed in with the tide and made my paddle out. That ignorance has put me down and left me feeling quite ill today, and I’m paying a price for it.

(more…)

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Vans “Endangered Waves” Sandal: Style Meets Substance

Wednesday, March 12th, 2008

vans surfrider endagered waves sandalThe heightened awareness of the perils facing our environment has inspired companies throughout our industry to find creative ways of helping out, more so now than ever before. The surfing community, as much as any other, has risen up to take the lead on this cause. And why shouldn’t we? We as surfers are completely dependent on Mother Nature and her well-being.

With that being said, substance alone usually won’t sell a whole lot of product. In order for products aimed at helping out the environment to be successful, it is imperative that companies are combining their substance with a whole lot of fresh style. With the “Endangered Waves” sandal(or ’slippah’ for the braddahs out there) Vans and Surfrider have done just that.

With the loss of prominent breaks over the last few years and the endangerment of so many more, Vans, Surfing Magazine and Surfrider Foundation have teamed up to produce a sandal featuring images of four of the most threatened waves from around the world. Ma’alaea in Hawaii, El Gongal in Spain, Bastion Point in Australia and Trestles in California can all be seen on the sandal. It’s a classy design and just an all around great looking set of footwear.

When speaking of the sandal, Surfrider CEO Jim Moriarty had this to say…

Right now a surf break is being lost or otherwise diminished somewhere on this planet, people need to understand that waves are finite resources. Once they are lost or damaged it is difficult, if not impossible, to restore them.

Thanks to Vans, a portion of proceeds, totaling $10,000, from the sales of these sandals will be donated to the Surfrider Foundation to assist them in their efforts to protect and preserve oceans, waves and beaches across the globe. Not only are they doing it with substance, but they’ve got a whole lot of style as well.

vans
surfrider foundation

Posted in Brands, Surfing | No Comments »

Surfers Continue Going Green Worldwide

Monday, February 18th, 2008

While taking my daily news-cruise I came upon another story of surfers putting themselves on the front line against the all-out assault on our environment. This time it was 15 Aussie surfers and kayakers that went as far as to put their lives at risk in order to protest the dredging of a channel off of Port Phillip Bay. They paddled out right through the ships exclusion zone and came within yards of the massive ship and it’s dredging equipment. They all ended up with a $176 fine and a scolding from the local police, but were successful in making sure that their voices were heard.

Did they take it to far by risking their lives to make their point? There are points to be made on either side. What is clear is that the surfing community is as in touch, if not more so, with what is going on with the environment as any other. After recently receiving tickets to Jack Johnson’s Kokua Festival I checked out their site was extremely impressed with the measure’s they have taken to be ‘green’. Some of the methods they have implemented in order to be bio-friendly include offering eco-friendly merchandise such as reusable tote bags, bottles, and organic cotton clothing, as well as a $2 option used to offset emissions from their personal travel to and from the show. More and more surf contests are being fueled with bio-diesel and clothing companies are making a point of using recycled materials in the production of clothing and shoes.

The success of The Surfrider Foundation and local communities coming together and stopping the proposed Trestles toll-road has been a well-documented example of how closely knit and well-informed the surfing community as well as its industry really is. Surfers continue to rise up for cause after cause and I imagine this trend will only continue to grow as more awareness is risen in regard to the damage being done against the environment.

Posted in Surfing | 2 Comments »

Victory for Trestles

Thursday, February 7th, 2008

trestlesThey came, they rallied, and they won!! In what appears to be a major victory for Trestles, San Onofre State Park, and all those who oppose the development of the proposed toll road, the California Coastal Commission voted 8-2 against the project. After hearing from both sides, the commission found it was inconsistent with the state law regulating development along the coastline.

The vote dealt a serious blow to the project’s chances of obtaining a coastal development permit, a necessity before construction can begin. The 16-mile extension of the state Route 241 toll road would link Rancho Santa Margarita and San Onofre. It would cut into the eastern portion of the popular San Onofre State Beach and end near Trestles. Anyone familiar with the area knows what a truly classic and special place this is and construction of the proposed $875 million four-lane road would do serious and irreparable damage to the areas natural habitats, wetlands, and last but not least the world-renowned break at Trestles.

This had been an ongoing battle that has brought many to be highly charged and emotionally involved, and for good reason. With good ol’ Gov. Schwarzenegger seeking to put a band-aid on the states current economic issues by closing state parks up and down the coast, this was a chance for ocean-goers and beach loving citizens everywhere to go and let their voices be heard.

The meeting had been originally scheduled to be held at the town-hall building in Oceanside, but organizers knew that a space this small simply would not accommodate the anticipated gathering. With a standing room only crowd largely organized by the Surfrider Foundation that peaked out at over three thousand heading to the Wyland Hall at the Del Mar Fairgrounds dominating over any semblance of an opposition, those who came let it be known that they simply would not go down without a fight. They came, they rallied, and they won. And for now, Trestles as we know it has been saved.

trestlessurfrider foundation

Posted in Surfing | 2 Comments »

Governator Supports Trestles Toll Road, Closing State Beaches

Friday, January 18th, 2008

trestlesYesterday, Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger issued a letter in support of the proposed Trestles toll road extension in South Orange County. The letter was issued just two weeks before a critical vote by the California Coastal Commission to determine if the proposed extension violates the California Coastal Act.

The disappointing announcement comes just six days after the California Governor unveiled his plans to close forty-eight California State Parks, including Carlsbad, San Clemente, and parts of San Onofre State Parks. Many had hoped the Governator was being insincere with his threats to shut down these state parks and beaches, but with the issuance of this letter it appears nothing is untouchable when it comes to doing whatever it takes to remedy California’s current fiscal crisis.

Beyond the unbelievable crowds that gather there almost daily, Trestles as it is is a very unique and special place. Anyone who has ever made the trek from the parking lot to this historic break knows that the implementation of the proposed road will seriously damage one of the truly unique waves in the world and a big part of California Surf history. The Surfrider Foundation activists and other opponents to the planned toll road will be gathering in Oceanside, California on February 6th for a rally outside the California Coastal Commission hearing. All members of the public are invited and encouraged to attend. You can head over to savetrestles.com for more info.

trestlessurfrider foundation

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Project Blue: Ditch the Green and “Be True to Blue”

Monday, August 6th, 2007

projectblue.JPGLets stop talking about “going green” for a minute and focus on “going Blue.” Project Blue is a campaign to protect our coastlines and oceans. It is ran by Propaganda in order to raise money for the Surfrider Foundation. I found out about it from ads in the Magazines and went online to find more info. It is a unique approach that at first I didn’t quite get, it seemed like there wasn’t enough being done for something as important as protecting our Oceans. So I sent an email to Propaganda and got some good responses that help shed some light on the project.

5ones: Is it ran by Surfrider Foundation or Propaganda HQ?

Propaganda: Project BLUE is run by Propaganda, this is a commercial initiative and we are using product to raise money for Surfrider Foundation. To make this effort work for everyone involved we set it up as a campaign driven by our brand partners.

5ones: Are you actively seeking partnerships with companies or letting them come to you?
Propaganda: We are seeking partnerships but only in select catogories. O’Neill has just signed on and they will be another great partner to help drive this effort to raise funds for Surfrider Foundation.

5ones: Do you have more companies being announced soon? if so you don’t need to tell us which ones, it just seems like there isn’t a lot of 3rd party company participation when the cause is such a noble one and so close to home.

Propaganda: O’Neill is the newest company to join our group and we may have one more to announce before the end of the year. That quite possibly be the last one at least for a couple of years. All our partners are experiencing positive response and support from retailers and consumers. I think we’ll expand the product offerings within the partnership group before we bring on more partners.

5ones: What is the percent of proceeds donated to protecting the ocean from each sale?

Propaganda: Rather than go with a percentage of sales, we opted for a hard figure of $2 per item. This number, while may seem small, is easily absorbed in the retail price and still keeps the product desirable by consumers and retailers. Plus, the real bang is that the brands have identified volume based products to generate money. For example, the Reef Fanning is the top selling sandal for Reef. Rather than create a new sandal, they felt it better to make a project BLUE Fanning to really make an impact with this effort. And the consumer is sending a message, project BLUE Fanning was the #1 sandal on Swell.com for the month of July. This is a good sign that consumers are looking for ways to get involved with Surfrider Foundation and helping to protect our oceans. Project BLUE is pulling together manufacturers, retailers and consumers to help our environment.

5ones:Anything else you feel we should cover please let us know?

Propaganda:Project BLUE is not about consumerism, its about responsible consumerism. As consumers we have the power to make changes, every little thing helps. Changing light bulbs, recycling and buying products that are environmentally friendly and/or that contribute to helping the environment are part of that change. We can buy a better future.

All in all I am stoked on the idea and I now that I understand their goals I can totally see their game plan. The Fanning sandal has literally become an Icon. Billabong had the best selling boardshort of last year, and Electric, Nixon, Dakine and O’Neill are all perfect partners. I think it is a great idea to create proceeds off of volume and off of already top selling brands and products

The only thing I could find that maybe could be done better is if these partners all had prominent banners with links to info about Project Blue linking users to the site. Billabong, Nixon and all the partners are getting an unbelievable amount of traffic to their sites and it would be cool if they directed some of that to the cause.

See Current Product Line at Be True to Blue or at Swell

And here is more info to where you can get involved

Propaganda
Surfrider Foundation
O’Neill

Posted in Brands | No Comments »

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