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November 11 2008 | Jim's Blog,
by Jim

sanctuary - sanc⋅tu⋅ar⋅y [sangk-choo-er-ee] – noun, plural -ar⋅ies.
1. A sacred or holy place.
2. Any place of refuge; asylum.
3. A tract of land where birds and wildlife, esp. those hunted for sport, can breed and take refuge in safety from hunters.

Last month Surfrider Foundation helped achieve a meaningful victory. This one has some subtleties to it. Essentially we increased protection of a marine sanctuary.

We increased protection of a marine sanctuary. Sounds pretty straightforward doesn't it? A marine sanctuary is like a park... but it's in the ocean. Like protected parks all over the world, the Monterrey Bay National Marine Sanctuary is important due to the biodiversity it hosts, it's location and the fact that it's still in good shape. Every park, at least ever park that is worth protecting, has limitations. For instance I don't think we'll see the day that a Supercross will be hosted within the confines of Yosemite. Instead what is happening is that parks, again... all over the world, are ratcheting up the protective measures. They are doing this because parks and open spaces are ever more rare and ever more valuable.

This particular victory closes a loophole on a previous ruling. Essentially it limits the type of motorized craft that can be used in the sanctuary. That makes sense... few of us would think it would be ok to jam through the Grand Canon on a dirt bike.

The subtlety to this is that Mavericks and Ghost Trees are both in this boundary of this sanctuary. This speaks right to the center of our mission "... for the protection and enjoyment of oceans, waves and beaches." Surfrider Foundation isn't against towing in, we had multiple pros on our team that routinely tow in. Garrett MacNamara is currently on our team. We've never taken a stance against the sport of towing in... we're talking about a sanctuary. This victory is about protecting existing sanctuaries. For the same reason few of us would think a Supercross through Yosemite makes sense... this victory makes sense.
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