Save The Waves Coalition

+ World Surfing Reserves +


World Surfing Reserves proactively identifies, designates and preserves outstanding waves, surf zones and their surrounding environments, around the world. The program serves as a global model for preserving wave breaks and their surrounding areas by recognizing the positive environmental, social, cultural and economic benefits of waves.

Save The Waves Coalition, along with key partners National Surfing Reserves (NSR) Australia and the International Surfing Association (ISA), launched World Surfing Reserves in 2009, and will be implementing the global program’s first enshrinements in 2010. The initiative will create a “UNESCO of surfing” to educate the world on the tremendous universal value of these special places, and provide tools to help local communities better protect cherished surf breaks.

How World Surfing Reserves Works
The program is broken down into four main phases: the nomination process, the selection process, enshrinements, and ongoing management plans, and is managed by three governing bodies: the Vision Council, the Executive Committee, and the Field Team.

WSR Criteria, Scoring & Enshrinement

WSR applications are accepted throughout the year and are evaluated by the Vision Council based on four criteria: 

     - Quality and Consistency of the Wave or Surf Zone;
     - Unique Environmental Characteristics of the Area;
     - Surf Culture and History; and
     - Community Support. 


The Vision Council evaluates and approves sites as WSRs, and then enshrinements are prioritized by the Field Team with guidance from the Vision Council.

The Result
An ongoing, global network of surfing reserves will be created and managed, and will be recognized by the international surfing and environmental communities, in partnership with local communities. World Surfing Reserves unites the global surfing community to protect the world’s most sacred surf spots, and in turn inspires local communities to protect their own cherished waves.


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