Plastic Free Surfing

The tropical paradise island of Bali attracted more than 5 million tourists last year. With local infrastructure pushed to the limit and a social media-obsessed generation of travelers, it was only a matter of time before Bali’s trash problem made it to international headlines. Like clockwork, many tons of rubbish are washed upon Bali’s shores during the rainy season every year. While some of the trash is certainly from Bali, it’s the heavy rainfall and winds that push the trash from nearby islands such as Java and Sumatra all the way to the shores of Bali. Island cleanups, conducted mostly on Bali’s popular beaches and driven largely by the local community, have helped increase awareness of this environmental crisis, yet only offer a very temporary solution as the changing tides are relentless in its trash delivery. Every morning at Kuta beach, there is a team of a locals appointed from the government to clean the beach, yet they are no match against the forces of nature that bring a seemingly endless supply of human rubbish every day as the tides change.

The more permanent solution to this problem, of course, is to attack the actual cause. We must campaign globally to one another, that by changing our patterns of consumption and reliance on one-time use products, we can attack the root of this pandemic and start to make an actual change towards sustainability. One surf school in Bali is committed to being part of the solution to help keep our planet and our oceans clean. Odysseys Surf School, located directly at Kuta beach, has implemented a ‘plastic free’ policy to both reduce their own plastic waste and educate their customers. It’s a small step yes, but if every business followed suit, just imagine how profound the positive impact on our environment would be.

Like before, Odysseys will still provide free drinking water for their customers. The only thing that has changed is that it’s now plastic free and they won’t be using one-use products anymore. Every Odysseys customer is reminded to bring their own water bottle to the lesson, as the drinking water supplied is now dispensed from larger, reusable jugs. This encourages customers to refill their own bottles or as an alternative, they can use one of reusable cups available to stay hydrated. For those interested, reusable BPA-free water bottles are available for direct purchase in their store.

This simple change keeps tens of thousands of plastic water bottles from reaching the island’s already overflowing landfills and trash-processing facilities. Hopefully more businesses on the island will follow along!

To book for the fun surf lesson with us, visit our website here