Surfers of the World Taking a Stand to Save Waves
Serge Dedina - Imperial Beach Patch
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May 16, 2013

On the first ever Global Wave Wednesday, surfers and environmentalists from 10 countries came together last week in Rosarito to talk about some old and new strategies to preserve waves and beaches.

“We are more than a wave,” Pablo Narvaez of Barra de la Cruz told me last week while we ate lunch at the Rosarito Beach Hotel.

Barra de la Cruz, considered one of the world’s best waves by Surfer Magazine, is an indigenous coastal village in Mexico where surfing is the main source of tourist revenues. “We have sea turtles, a mangrove lagoon and a beautiful village filled with culture,” Pablo said.

Pablo was among surf conservationists from 19 organizations representing 10 countries who came together in Rosarito Beach at the 3rd Global Wave Conference, the world’s largest gathering dedicated to global wave protection. Hosted by the International Symposium on the Protection of Waves, the conference was held to discuss experiences and strategies to protect coastal ecosystems and resources.

“Over the last decade the surf conservation movement has blossomed but until recently the world’s surf protection groups have been working in isolation,” said Surfrider Foundation Environmental Director Dr. Chad Nelsen. “The Global Wave Conference is designed to change that and promote exchange of knowledge and programs, information sharing and collaboration, with the larger goal to establish a unified front for global wave protection.”

The conference represents a growing understanding that the world’s coastlines, and more specifically its surf spots, are important economical, ecological, cultural and recreational resources that must be protected.

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