California: water quality is generally good | Photo: Parker Knight/Creative Commons

The 25th annual Beach Report Card reveals that Cowell Beach, at the wharf in Santa Cruz County, is considered the worst spot and the most polluted beach of the 2014/2015 season.

According to Heal the Bay, only 13 of the beaches monitored statewide received D to F grades during summer dry weather, when most beachgoers typically use the ocean.

High bacteria counts at these sites are linked to potential illnesses like stomach flu, ear and upper respiratory infections and major skin rashes.

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Oceans: everyone wants a piece of it | Photo: Maassen/Quiksilver

What can we do to make a positive impact on the oceans? "The Next Wave" opens our mind to the importance of ocean planning. Because we need to get involved.

Filmmaker Chris Hannant spent ten days traveling the Atlantic coast, capturing gorgeous scenery from Virginia to Maine and interviewing coastal stakeholders, government leaders and Surfrider members about what we can each do to make a positive impact on this very precious resource.

The result is "The Next Wave," nine minutes of reflection on the meaning of the oceans for water sports enthusiasts, beachgoers, fishermen, tourism, shipping, energy industries, and marine life itself.

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Marine parks: a prision for animals | Photo: Jo-Anne McArthur/We Animals

Kelly Slater has joined the protests against marine park chain SeaWorld.

The 11-time world surfing champion wanted to confront the theme park group during its online annual meeting by submitting a question on behalf of People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA), which owns stock in the company.

Slater's goal was to persuade other stakeholders to introduce policy changes, and demand the release of SeaWorld's orcas, who have been used by the company for more than 40 years.

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