Home :: Blog
BLOG for the Surfrider Foundation

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Watershed restoration in Calabasas

Here's a really cool example of a watershed restoration project in Calabasas (CA). This is Las Virgenes Creek which is tributary to Malibu Creek. The site is at Highway 101 and Las Virgnes road. This should increase riparian habitat, encourage water quality improvement, reduce thermal pollution, and encourage groundwater recharge.

Images and info submitted by Syd Temple, who was the design engineer on this project and a Surfrider Foundation member.

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Hungtington/Seal Beach Chapter and Tom Jones Paddle recap

From L to R - Kitty Willis, DJ, Tom Jones, Jericho Poplar

In October, the Huntington/Seal Beach Chapter graciously welcomed Tom Jones to Seal Beach to show their support of his epic paddle along the Pacific coasline. The purpose of Tom's magnificent feat was to raise awareness on the problem of plastic pollution in our oceans. Numerous Chapters in Southern California are working on campaigns to reduce the use of plastic... during beach clean-ups, bans on polystyrene foam in numerous seaside communities, and even bans on plastic bags (passed in San Francisco and presently being considered in the city of Los Angeles).

Learn more about Tom's paddle here>>> CaliforniaPaddle.com

Monday, November 26, 2007

G Love & Donavon Frankenreiter in Brazil

Here are some shots from G Love's and Donavon's trip to Brazil. They put on a small concert for some very stoked kids from the local Rocinha Surf School.

Monday, November 19, 2007

Letter To The Editor

Hey Guys- Check out this great letter I got from a young Surfrider supporter.

Hey! My names is Anna Fayfer, I'm 16 and I go to Pompano Beach High School. I'm a recent Surfrider member and I absolutely love everything that Surfrider Foundation is about. I actually started a club at my school this year called "Make A Wave" and I just wanted to share our success so far. We've only been in action for two months now, but we already have 35 dedicated students, sponsorship from both Starbucks and Panera Bread, and are already embarking on our exciting journey. We are just starting our first fundraiser, and are selling handmade ribbons that feature our clubs name at lunch during school. We participated in International World Water Monitoring Day and went down to the beach and did our own test of the beach's DO, Ph, turbidity and temperature.
My peers have simply been amazed to find out what is going on with our oceans, especially with the sewage pipe that is being dumped into our very own Pompano/Deerfield Inlet. I have seen a noticeable difference in the students' attitudes already, and have nothing but excitement for what lies ahead of us. I am constantly keeping up with Surfrider Foundation events, watching for anything that we can help out with, I have also been sharing some of the great info I find in Soup, and I wanted to thank you guys for that.
I believe that to truely "save our beaches" is not just about picking up trash for other people, but informing them about the problems they are causing, and getting more people inspired to join the cause. Surfrider Foundation does just this, and that's why I enjoy the organization so much. We have many plans and goals within the club, and eventually we hope to set up a recycling program at our beach.

This isn't your last time hearing from us. Make A Wave is brand new and I want everyone to know about the group of kids at Pompano Beach High who are making a difference!

Thank You,
Anna Fayfer
Pompano Beach, FL

P.S. I attached some photos of us on world water monitoring day, as well as our float in the schools homecoming parade.

Friday, November 16, 2007

Save Takanassee Beach, Long Branch, NJ

They aren't just messing with the environment on this one. They're messing with history, and we ain't gonna let 'em.

The Jersey Shore Chapter held a rally with 200 people in attendance at a church in Long Branch to save the Takanassee Beach Club.

They got great press in statewide and local papers and they put up a great video on YouTube.

This historic property is slated to be turned into condos pending a coastal development from the NJ DEP. The property has three buildings that were US Lifesaving Service stations. The US Lifesaving Service was the forerunner of the modern Coast Guard.

Monday, November 05, 2007

Beach Erosion - No Easy Answers

As the following article by Chris Dixon from the New York Times points out, beach erosion is threatening coastal structures all along the East Coast, and many are questioning the wisdom of expensive and temporary beach fill projects. Plus, government funding sources are drying up and many local funding referendums have been voted down.

Meanwhile, in Florida and elsewhere, traditional sources of sand have been nearly exhausted and a recent request by Miami Beach to import sand from the Bahamas and Caribbean was rejected by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers.

As Beaches Erode, So Do Solutions

Published: November 2, 2007

Over the last decade or more, federal and state funds to restore beach sand have become increasingly scarce, as government officials, taxpayers and environmentalists have argued against spending hundreds of millions of public dollars for projects that often wash away after a few strong storms.

This has left Atlantic and Gulf Coast communities to develop their own solutions, often imposing what are referred to as sand taxes. But the potential for assessments of thousands of dollars — particularly in towns filled with vacation homes — has created a divisive issue that many homeowners, voters and elected officials have yet to solve.


Thursday, November 01, 2007

Wave Energy Buoy Plunges to Ocean Floor (Oregon)

Link to article

Wave energy buoy plunges to ocean floor
By Winston Ross
The Register-Guard

Published: Thursday, November 1, 2007

NEWPORT — A 72-foot-tall wave energy buoy is sitting at the bottom of the ocean floor today — all 35 tons of it — after the $2 million contraption leaked, filled with water and sank.

It will remain there, 2½ miles off of Agate Beach, until next spring.

A spokesman for the buoy’s owner, British Columbia-based Finavera Renewables Inc., said the experimental device already has done its job collecting data over the past two months, and the steel tube would have been cut into scrap anyway, once it was removed from the water.

That isn’t going to happen anytime soon, however. The waves are too high to remove the buoy safely, and with winter looming, the seas won’t settle down before spring, said Michael Clark, Finavera’s spokesman.

“The loss is bad publicity,” Clark said. “We would not have liked this to happen, but what we want people to take away from it is that it’s not going to impact the development of this technology, and getting it to a commercial stage.”

Having finished gathering the data it needed, the buoy, which is 12 feet in diameter, was scheduled to be pulled out of the water this month. But last Friday it started experiencing “buoyancy issues,” Clark said. Water was leaking into the device, and the bilge pump inside it — installed specifically to handle leakage — failed. By midday Saturday, the buoy was 110 feet below sea level. The company has since removed the anchor and cables that had tethered it in place.

The tube is equipped with a rubberized pump that takes in seawater, causing a piston inside it to move up and down, generating hydraulic electricity. Clark said he’s not sure why it leaked, and that there’s no way to tell until it’s back out of the water. The buoy was collecting data on how much energy it could generate.

“It was a prototype,” Clark said, “and issues arise with prototypes sometimes. This is not going to be the device we would use in a commercial wave project, which clearly would have gone through a lot more testing, including survivability tests.”

Clark said the sunken buoy isn’t a navigation hazard — it’s on its side, at the bottom of the ocean, and was placed away from popular fishing grounds so that it wouldn’t interfere with boats.

“There’s absolutely no risk of any environmental damage,” Clark added. “It’s not moving at all, and there are no hydraulic oils in it.”

To remove it, crews need three days of good weather and small seas, Clark said. That may not happen until next year.

“We got all the data we need out of it,” Clark said. “That aspect was a success, from our point of view.”

But the sinking may add fodder to an increasingly wary group of fishermen and residents along the Oregon Coast concerned that networks of wave energy buoys could affect sensitive marine ecology areas and be difficult to maintain.

“It’s eye-opening, really,” said Gus Gates, a member of the nonprofit Surfrider Foundation, which has been monitoring wave energy’s progress in recent months. “They should be required to get that out of there. It’s a big chunk of trash in our ocean.”

Gregg Kleiner, a spokesman for Oregon State University, said he didn’t think the sinking would make it harder to sell the public on wave energy, noting that the newness of the technology is bound to mean failed prototypes.

“This is wave energy; it’s a hostile environment out there,” Kleiner said. “That’s what research is about. You develop a prototype and learn from your mistakes.”