Cleaner beaches in Bali 

The future of Bali’s beaches are looking brighter and brighter, with the arrival and testing of some new beach cleaning equipment that has been provided by Coca-Cola Bottling Indonesia and Quiksilver Indonesia.

There will be an official hand-over event this Saturday the 21st of February starting at 7:30 am in front of the SATGAS office at Kuta Beach, together with beach cleaning and other activities.

Housed at Kuta Beach and operated under the authority of Bendesa Adat Kuta, the new Massey Ferguson tractor will soon be prowling Kuta’s beaches from Tuban up to Seminyak, its special beach cleaning unit picking things like cigarette butts, bottle caps, bits of plastic and other trash from the sand and then dumping it all into the trucks that will be taken to the trash dump. The waste collection process will be done by the GUS environmental organization.

Originally planned to be launched at the beginning of the rainy season, the testing process has exposed two hurdles that need to be overcome to achieve an optimally effective process; 1) The heavy rain and wet sand impact the effectiveness of the unit, and 2) the unit was not designed to have to pick up the huge amount of large waste items that are washed up on the beach during rainy season.

The team has studied the root cause and will further improve the process through a two-part process. First the creation and use of a primary waste collecting “Beach Rack” for these large items, followed by the use of the existing sand filtering unit for the smaller items.

When the rainy season ends and the dry season begins, only the sand-filtering unit will needed as there are far fewer of the larger waste items on the beach. The tractor will then be cruising up and down the beach, filtering the sand of all the debris that makes it dangerous, dirty, and unsightly.

The goal ultimate of the project goal is to return Kuta Beach and all Bali’s beaches back to the postcard perfect white-sand glory that is displayed on websites and brochures all over the world, with tractors like this working not only at Kuta Beach but also at Sanur, Nusa Dua, and Jimbaran, and wherever else they are needed.

Read more...

Surfers Against Sewage 

At the SAS HQ we're cracking open the energy drinks to celebrate a major campaign victory as the States of Guernsey finally committed to full sewage treatment. This is great news for Guernsey's recreational water users, bathers, water related businesses and the reputation of Guernsey.

We've have been campaigning on Guernsey for full sewage treatment since September 2004. During that period we have delivered nearly 20 SAS actions calling for full sewage treatment each with our unique mix of hard hitting campaigns and humour, while an estimated 6,574,500,000 gallons of wastewater and raw sewage has been dumped untreated into the sea off Guernsey.

Victory was almost in reach when the States of Guernsey's Public Service Department proposed a wastewater charge. The team at SAS supported this charge but called for commitment to full sewage treatment, a realistic timescale to deliver the sewage treatment and assurances that the wastewater charge would help fund full sewage treatment. All SAS's stipulations were incorporated by deputy David De Lisle in his amendment.

Yesterday, the De Lisle amendment was strongly supported and the final hurdle was cleared. A future with full sewage treatment will give recreational water users on Guernsey dramatically improved protection. It will support water related businesses and help enhance the image of Guernsey with an improved coastal environment for all to enjoy.

This campaign victory came on the back of 4 and a half years committed campaigning and 18 actions calling for full sewage treatment for Guernsey. Actions included packed public meetings with standing room only and superbly supported SAS petitions in 2004. Dr Loo landed on Guernsey to warn of a reduction in water quality in November 2005 and a 60 hour vigil on the steps of the State's HQ in January 2006.

2007 saw port protests and surfing zombies lobbying the States and in 2008 SAS made full sewage treatment an election issue and towed the SAS 15ft inflatable turd with the slogan "VOTE FULL SEWAGE TREATMENT" around the island.

Read more...

Surfrider Foundation staff 

This past weekend, the Surfrider Foundation celebrated their 2008 Wavemaker Award recipients. The Surfrider Foundation’s Board of Directors and Staff give out the award annually to individuals and companies for their outstanding volunteer performance and support to help the organization fulfill its mission.

Outstanding Contribution/Bob Mignogna – A legend in the publishing world, Bob Mignona tapped into his extensive Rolodex to assist the Surfrider Foundation in its fight to protect San Onofre State Park and Trestles. Bob’s efforts were instrumental in rallying activists, sharing information and generating support, and his keen insights have proven invaluable in galvanizing the local community around this important fight.

Development Award/Harriet Zaretsky and Steve Henry – Harriet and Steve created the Dillon Henry Memorial Internship Fund - Surfrider’s first endowed fund - in memory of their son Dillon. The fund provides, in perpetuity, monetary support to help students pursue a career in coastal marine conservation. The funds from this endowment provide annual stipends for two qualified interns to work with the Surfrider Foundation’s Environmental and/or Legal Departments. Thanks to these funds, the Surfrider Foundation can attract, hire and train the most committed interns.

Distinguished Service/Glenn Suba – A founding member of Surfrider Brasil, Glenn has given 100% to the Surfrider Foundation throughout the years. As a volunteer, environmental consultant, and “greening” expert, Glenn is constantly thinking of opportunities for Surfrider Foundation participation. Always on the front line of activism, his creative thinking motivates others to continue fighting for the protection of our coastlines.

Chapter Leadership/Scott Werny – Scott has been a Surfrider Foundation Chapter Activist for over 10 years, and his dedication has been a constant for our Hawaiian Chapter Network. Over the years, Scott has played a key leadership role in the Oahu Chapter, helping to create and implement a vision. In addition to establishing the credibility needed for an environmental organization to be effective, Scott has worked endlessly to establish a beach access coalition throughout the Hawaiian Islands. As a result of his hard work and efforts, the “Shoreline Access Coalition of Hawaii” includes B.E.A.C.H., Beach Access Hawaii, Free Ocean Project Kahea, Keep the North Shore Country, Livable Hawaii Kai Hui, Maui Tomorrow Foundation, Save Kahului Harbor, Sierra Club Oahu Group, Surfrider Foundation Kauai Chapter, Surfrider Foundation Oahu Chapter, Surfrider Foundation Maui Chapter, and Windward Ahupua'a Alliance.

Corporate Partner Award/Barefoot Wine – Jeremy Soine - Barefoot Wine’s relationship with the Surfrider Foundation dates back over 20 years, to original partners Michael Houlahan and Bonnie Harvey, who were early supporters and activists. For the last three years, the Surfrider Foundation has partnered with Barefoot Wine in presenting their Barefoot Wine Beach Rescue Project. This unique event has worked with over a dozen Surfrider Foundation chapters across the country to keep our beaches “barefoot friendly” and help draw attention and support to such campaigns as Lake Worth, Save Pupukea, Montauk and the Save Trestles campaign.

Read more...