Portugal’s President Catches Wave of WSR

October 6, 2011 –President Aníbal Cavaco Silva of Portugal released a statement endorsing the Ericeira World Surfing Reserve, which will be officially dedicated as the first World Surfing Reserve on the European continent on October 14th, 2011.He acknowledged the significance of preserving the surfing coastline for not only the thousands of Portuguese surfers, but also for the vitality of Portugal’s economy, the health of the coastal and marine environment, and maintaining a high quality of life for residents.

“When we talk of surfing at our beaches, we are talking about much more than a sport: we are evoking a lifestyle and a relationship with the sea that is very Portuguese, a relationship that is natural and ancestral,” President Silva states. “The designation of Ericeira as a World Surfing Reserve should serve as an example to stimulate everyone to aspire to a more environmentally healthy country with an excellent standard of living.” *

The Ericeira coastline will officially be dedicated as a World Surfing Reserve on October 14th, 2011. The dedication ceremony will honor Ericeira’s unique surf history, culture, and environment. 

The Ericeira area of Portugal is a treasure for Portuguese and international surfers alike. The approved Ericeira surf zone consists of 4 km (2.5 miles) of coastline, containing seven quality surf breaks, including Pedra Branca, Reef, Ribeira d’Ilhas, Cave, Crazy Left, Coxos, and São Lourenço.

The Ericeira World Surfing Reserve has also been officially acknowledged in the Portuguese National Assembly. Hélder Sousa Silva, an Assembly Member and previous Councilmember of the Mafra Municipality, issued a political declaration recognizing the value of the surfing coastline and illustratingthe positive contributions that surfing brings to the Portuguese economy. The surf industry represents a significant portion of national employment and revenue, from the production and exportation of products such as surfboards, clothing, and accessories, to the service and tourism industry including hotels, restaurants, and surf schools.

“The formal recognition of the value of the Ericeira surfing coastline from Portuguese dignitaries is directly in line with the goals of World Surfing Reserves,” said Will Henry, founder of Save The Waves and member of the World Surfing Reserves Vision Council. “This awareness must then be met with the long-term commitment to coastal and marine protection and the active stewardship of Ericeira’s remarkable surfing resources.”

October is an epic month for surfing in Portugal with the Dedication Ceremony of the Ericeira World Surfing Reserve on October 14th, which will be immediately followed by the Association of Professional Surfers (ASP) World Tour in Peniche for the third year in a row. The 2011 Rip Curl Pro Peniche, Portugal, will again be staged at the mythical Portuguese beachbreak known as Supertubos, from October 15th to the 24th.

* This is not an official translation.

About World Surfing Reserves

World Surfing Reserves (WSR) proactively identifies, designates, and preserves outstanding waves, surf zones and their surrounding environments, around the world. WSR is an initiative launched by Save The Waves Coalition in 2009 in conjunction with National Surfing Reserves – Australia, and through additional partnerships with the International Surfing Association (ISA) and Stanford University’s Center for Responsible Travel (CREST).


Portugal Contact: Jorge Cardoso, Local Stewardship Council, Ericeira World Surfing Reserve: +351 916 285 170 • jorgefcardoso@gmail.com

USA contact: Dean LaTourrette, WSR Executive Committee, Executive Director – Save The Waves:  +1-415-596-7873 • dean@savethewaves.org

Australia contact: Brad Farmer, WSR Executive Committee, Founder – National Surfing Reserves Australia (www.surfingreserves.org):  +61 413 031 870 • unitedrelations@sydney.net

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