Our Ocean Conference: Save The Waves represents surf conservation on an international platform

Recently, Save The Waves had the humbling opportunity of speaking at the Our Ocean Conference in the small island state of Palau — or as they call it a “large ocean state”. 

The conference has been organized in various locations over the last six years. It’s a really unique partnership between the host country, the US state department, and a variety of international organizations and NGOs. It represents a platform for countries to come together to address ocean challenges and make serious commitments to do so.

Originally conceived of by then-Secretary of State John Kerry, the Our Ocean Conference has become a unique and powerful gathering that helps countries and NGOs organize and collaborate across institutions, while tackling the biggest challenges facing the health of our oceans.

Save The Waves was invited this year to speak at the plenary gathering about the unique intersection of land and sea that surfers occupy and our power to address the effects of marine pollution as a global community.

CEO Nik Strong-Cvetich presented these points and highlighted the need for surfers to participate in conservation, as well as our new concept of surf ecosystems. He also discussed the Save The Waves App as a powerful mobile tool to catalog and take action on the most pressing threat to these ecosystems.

"It was humbling to address such a diverse, influential and well respected group of dignitaries, NGO leaders and conservation practitioners with our message of protecting surf ecosystems.

This experience was a powerful reminder that while our challenges are great, our collaborative potential is immense.

Overall, the conference was an amazing opportunity for Save The Waves to showcase our cutting-edge work, as well as engage with partners with whom we have not seen in person for two years. Sometimes, face-to-face interaction is truly the best means of collaboration.

Again, thank you to our fantastic partners at the World Surf League and the Ocean Protection Coalition for the invite, to our amazing Palauan hosts who were so patient and generous in sharing their beautiful country, and to our friends at the US State Department for all of the organizing and logistical support."

Watch the plenary session here:
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