di Erika Scafuro
Nature has been so kind with us. She welcomes us in environments full of treasures, stunning sceneries, spaces in which we can do what we love.
Who loves to surf loves the sea, the element that allow to practice this passion. How can we repay the generosity of nature if we don’t take care of her?
Nowadays plastic pollution in the seas is one of the biggest problem about the environment. According to a WWF report, 396 million tonnes of plastic are produced per year and most of it ends up at sea where it is estimated that, today, there are already over 150 million tonnes of plastic. This means that if you do not act the situation will become unsustainable, the entire ecosystem of the seas is in serious danger. The emergency of Covid-19 has moreover sharpened the problematic because the use of masks and gloves, combined with the incivility of the people, has increased microplastic pollution.
What worry more is in fact all that is deposited on the seabed and that is therefore not visible. Always according to a WWF report, the seabed of the Mediterranean Sea has been detected high levels of microplastics, up to 1.9 million fragments on a surface of only one square meter. This plastic is both a problem for marine organisms and for the humans; it has been calculated that on average we ingest five grams of plastic per week, the equivalent of a credit card.
What daily actions can do each of us to avoid further damage to our seas and shores with the amount of plastic and waste? It is necessary that each of us is educated to recycle, set a good example and, where it is possible, to remove plastic from our habits. Any ideas? To bring a water bottle to reuse, to have a canvas bag for shopping and at the supermarket prefer products with as few wrappers as possible. And, of course, between a surf session to another, clean beaches from trash and plastic. People who share the same desire to keep clean beach and protect the sea are invited to participate. It’s incredible how much plastic can be collected in a small area and in a few time.
In the world of surfing there are many foundations that organize beach cleaning initiatives. As Surfrider Foundation Europe, a non-profit organization created in 1990 by a group of surfers who wanted to preserve their playground, oceans and coasts. Today Surfrider Europe is made up of members and volunteers who are active in eleven European countries.
Every gesture is not little if added to that of many others, everyone is responsible.
How can we give back all the trash to the sea? Each of us can make the difference in marine plastic pollution with a civil and conscious behavior: please respect the environment and the sea, protect what you love.