2016 was a doozy. High highs, and low lows. I’m just gonna come right out and say it: 2017 is going to be The Year of Action. With that in mind, let’s take a minute to reflect on all that we accomplished last year thanks to the tireless efforts of our volunteers, members, and chapter leaders.
- Won Prop 67, making California the first state in the nation to ban single-use plastic bags.
- Won a landmark case against a wealthy homeowner in Malibu who for nearly 10 years has blocked public beach access at Las Flores canyon.
- Lobbied the Culver City Council to move forward with a local ban on Expanded Polystyrene takeout containers.
- Saved Trestles forever by winning a long-fought legal battle against the Transportation Corridor Agency.
- Launched our Ocean Friendly Restaurants program which helps local restaurants adopt practices that protect our coastal waterways.
- Teamed up with StokeShare through their One Watershed program and introduced surfing to dozens of underprivileged inner-city teens.
- Joined Surfrider San Diego and PangeaSeed to launch the Sea Walls Mural Project; a series of ocean-conscious murals that will soon be found in LA County.
These are just a few of the victories that your local Surfrider chapter has fought for tooth and nail. Our east coast chapters achieved major wins as well with the banning of offshore oil drilling in the Atlantic and Arctic, and again when the federal government cancelled plans for seismic blasting off the Atlantic coast – AMAZING!
There is little doubt that we face serious challenges in the coming year, but what is being drawn into focus is the enormous stake we all have in protecting what we love. There is little time to waste, and everyone – regardless of age, skill set or lifestyle – has something to contribute. Let’s all bear down in the coming months and continue to discover ways that we can become the solutions to the challenges we face.
Thank you for all you’ve done, and for all you’re gearing up to do.
Happy New Year!