Webisode: Update 1
Webisode: Update 2
TransparentSea Environmental Initiative
A Modern Voyage with Ancient Creatures
September 29th – October 25th
Tuesday 11th October, 2011 (Malibu, California, USA): Music legends, Hollywood stars and icons from surfing's halcyon days are among those supporting the unique environmental campaign dubbed "TransparentSea", an initiative of Australian professional surfer Dave Rastovich, 31 (Byron Bay, NSW, AUS) currently taking place on the Californian coast.
Designed to draw awareness to coastal marine issues, Rastovich is leading a group of like-minded surfer/activists in kayaks south from Gaviota to San Diego over a four-week period, stopping to engage with local communities and highlight key concerns.
Rock gods Taylor Hawkins (Foo Fighters) and Rob Trujillo (Metallica) were among those who attended the second of four scheduled benefit and awareness nights at Malibu on the weekend.
Other big-name supporters include American musician Jack Johnson, Australian actress Isabel Lucas and her singer/songwriter boyfriend, Angus Stone. Plus surfer and musician, Denny Aaberg, whose contribution to the culture is immortalized by the film he helped write; "Big Wednesday".
There may be glitz, but at its heart the motive of the TransparantSea campaign is to enable a collective voice for surfers and fellow ocean lovers to speak to the larger community. The causes identified during the four-week campaign are:
-Preservation of the Gaviota Coast and ship-strikes on blue whales in the Santa Barbara Channel (Santa Barbara County)
-Debate surrounding the Malibu Lagoon and the work of the Marine Mammal Care Centre (LA County)
"The voyage is designed to incorporate an element of adventure while experiencing the realities of this coastline by being at sea every day – the beauty and also some of the tragedies as a result of coastal issues here," explains Rastovich.
"Our starting point on the Gaviota Coast is just one example, it’s part of the last remaining 20 miles of undeveloped coastline in Southern California and that is both beautiful, yet sad and tragic too."
The maiden TransparentSea journey in Australia in 2009 saw the group tested by unpredicted weather including large seas, dust storms and the occasional curious shark.
The Californian coast has its own challenges – busy shipping lanes, naval zones and thick fog. The most recent leg from Leo Carrillo (north of Malibu) to Palos Verdes saw the group separated and forced to paddle for up to 10 hours, with no visual signs to guide them.
"In recent days we've moved through super dense areas of the LA region, going past one of the most heavily populated areas of America, and we spent a night and a day at sea … we couldn't see a damn thing because we were stuck in fog. We were at sea for 17 hours, and for the bulk of that we had no idea where we were, with only compasses to guide us. That's the adventure part of the trip," added Rastovich.
Chris Del Moro is among the local campaigners and is in familiar waters for the most part, having been born and raised in California. "Not only are we tapping into the international surfing community, we've been fortunate to connect with musicians and artists and environmentalists on a local level which really becomes the foundation for the movement. If having that personal connection enables people to learn and be motivated to take further action in their own lives and in their own ways, then that's a success."