More and more surf parks have been created in areas recently where the ocean is out of reach. However, controversy has been stirred on their sustainability and impact on the environment. Artificially designed to model typical waves in the ocean, surf parks are intended for those who do not have access to the ocean, but have a desire to surf.
In Surf Park Central’s Summit release, Dr. Jess Ponting mediates a roundtable discussion regarding the issue of surf parks being environmentally sustainable.
One of the men from the panel, Chris Hines (Owner, A Grain of Sand) stated his thoughts on whether or not surf parks should be allowed:
“I strongly believe that you cannot justify running a surf park if it’s going to have a detrimental effect on the climate and oceans through it’s energy or its material and resource use. That would be morally wrong and, in my humble view, against the spirit of what surfing is actually about.”
The panel then went on discussing the way that surf parks are designed and their plan to keep them environmentally friendly.
Nick Hounsfield, Co-Director/Co-Founder of The Wave UK, explained, “One of the things that we decided to do was get in contact with Chris Hines. We were then able to sit down with Chris and write our sustainability policy. We very much look to try and get that triple bottom-line balance between having a project that is financially sustainable, is environmentally sustainable, and also socially sustainable.”
Surfers are all very concerned with keeping the planet safe because when the earth is poorly affected, the ocean is included. The design of the wave pools seem to be as environmentally safe as possible.
The Environmental Director for the Surfrider Foundation, Chad Nelson, brought up a great point that, “80% of your carbon footprint is based on how many times you fly. The question I have is: Will your carbon footprint be higher if you drive to and surf the local surf park or if you fly to Bali?”
Watch below to view more from the Summit:
Check out pro surfers Dane Reynolds, Taj Burrow, Miguel Pupo, Jadson Andre, Gabriel Medina, Damien Fahrenfort, Craig Anderson, Jeremy Flores and Pauline Ado testing out the Wavegarder 2.0 in this video.
Learn more about how wave pools work: