​Rallying an $11 Billion Industry and 31 Million Surfers Worldwide on Behalf of Ocean Conservation

Arlington, Va. (February 27, 2018) – Conservation International and Save The Waves today announced a partnership that will expand World Surfing Reserves across the globe and mobilize the surfing community and the $11 billion surfing industry on behalf of ocean conservation. Conservation International CEO Dr. M. Sanjayan will share details about the partnership as part of his March 5th keynote address for the Global Wave Conference taking place in Santa Cruz, California from March 4th through 7th.

Through the partnership, Conservation International and Save the Waves will aim to increase the number of World Surfing Reserves – areas that protect world-class wave breaks and their surrounding coastal environments. The partnership will prioritize wave breaks that are particularly rich in biodiversity.

“Surfers are uniquely positioned to become an incredible force for ocean conservation,” said Conservation International CEO Dr. M. Sanjayan. “This community is over 30 million people strong, with both a deep connection to the ocean and incredible buying power. Conservation International is thrilled join Save the Waves to help harness this power to protect the places we love and value.”

“Partnering with Conservation International to step up our scale and impact. Both organizations recognize the need to protect unique surfing areas and the recreational, economic and ecological benefits of these places,” said Nik Strong-Cvetich, Executive Director, Save the Waves. “This partnership is the first step toward realizing our shared goal and protecting the places we love.”

World Surfing Reserves is a program of Save the Waves that has created a global network of protected areas that protect coastal environments around world-class wave breaks and works with local partners to ensure their long-term conservation. Launched in 2009, the program now protects over 70 surfing locations worldwide.

The partnerships will be the second for Conservation International and Save the Waves. An earlier partnership helped quantify surfing’s economic impact on the local economy at Uluwatu, Bali, Indonesia, finding it had $35 million in community benefits annually.

Conservation International has been a pioneer in establishing and expanding marine protected ar​eas around the globe. Details about this work are frequently posted on Conservation International’s blog, Human Nature.

About Conservation International
Conservation International uses science, policy and partnerships to protect the nature people rely on for food, fresh water and livelihoods. Founded in 1987, Conservation International works in more than 30 countries on six continents to ensure a healthy, prosperous planet that supports us all. Learn more about CI and its groundbreaking “Nature Is Speaking” campaign, and follow Conservation International’s work on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and YouTube.

About the Save the Waves
Save The Waves​ protects coastal ecosystems around the world through innovative strategies in partnership with local communities. Utilizing a unique combination of protected areas, economics, and direct action, Save The Waves partners with locals to preserve their coastal resources and in turn strengthen their communities.

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