It feels great knowing that there are so many organizations, groups and individuals that are as passionate about protecting the ocean as we here at Slyde are. Here’s a list of some of the top conservation groups, including some local to the Southern California area and the Slyde team.
Oceana is the largest international group focused on conserving the planet’s oceans and focuses on a small number of campaigns, but for good reason. These missions are highly specific, and include things like bringing down turtle death from scallop fisheries. Their campaigns may be short and sweet, but they really get things done! Oceana reported on their website that thanks to their efforts, “On September 3rd, the National Marine Fisheries Service issued emergency regulations that will shut down California’s drift gillnet fishery if a single endangered sperm whale is caught.” Talk about effective!
Ever heard of these guys? The Sea Shepherds have been the subject of one of Animal Planet’s reality TV shows. With a reputation for rather controversial and sometimes violent ways, the group goes to some drastic measures to achieve their goals. The SSCS works to prevent whaling vessels from carrying out their evil purpose. They also try to prevent as much commercial fishing, shark poaching and finning, as well as seal hunting, as they can. Many celebrities have contributed to their cause, including Emily Deschanel, Charles Bronson, Christian Bale and Edward Norton.
We’re not surprised if you’ve heard of Greenpeace before. They’re one of the most powerful organizations out there that are trying to conserve our oceans, the seafood we enjoy and the planet’s many whale species. Greenpeace’s website states that they have three major goals in mind:
Slyde has participated in quite a few Surfrider events (the Dockweiler Beach cleanup and Surfrider’s volunteer appreciation day, to name a few), so we had to add one of our favorites to our list of groups that really make a difference. This group was started by a bunch of surfers in 1984 that wanted to protect their sweet surf spot in Malibu. Now, Surfrider has a presence in over 18 countries. There are over 100 Surfrider chapters in the United States alone. The Surfrider Foundation’s main focus is to protect and conserve our planet’s beaches, waves and oceans. The small team of activists put most of their efforts into issues including “water quality, beach access, beach and surf spot preservation and sustaining coastal ecosystems”(Surfrider.org). As their website states, “Our mission is the protection and enjoyment of oceans, waves and beaches through a powerful activist network.”
This environmental group is based near our Slyde headquarters, right in Santa Monica. Heal the Bay’s mission is to protect the Santa Monica Bay, which stretches from Point Dume in Malibu to the Palos Verdes Peninsula. It includes the beaches of Santa Monica, Malibu, Venice Beach, Manhattan Beach, Hermosa Beach and Redondo Beach. The quality of water in the Santa Monica Bay declined as Los Angeles County developed in the 20th century. Thanks to the Clean Water Act, the Surfrider Foundation and Heal the Bay, water quality has thankfully improved in the last 20 years.
According to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) 39% of the United States’ population lives by the coast. So, for all of you coast dwellers out there, get out and make a difference! No matter what shore you live on, there’s likely a conservation group you can join, volunteer at or contribute to in your neighborhood. Even if you don’t live near the beach, check out these groups’ websites at the links above and find out what you can do to protect and preserve our oceans and beaches.