The ocean, largest lung of the Earth: learn more about the ocean thanks to the Ocean and Climate platform!

The Ocean and Climate 2015 platform was founded in 2014 by a number of actors from the civil society, including Surfrider Foundation Europe, all of which are concerned with putting the ocean in the center of negotiations and international measures on climate. With COP 21 approaching (the United Nations conference on climate change to be held in Paris in December, which will define the next international commitments), the platform is more than ever set on making its slogan heard: “an ocean in good health is a protected climate!” The first achievement of this group is a range of information and awareness-raising tools that will allow you not only to follow them, but also to learn more about the oceans, their role in the climate and the threats which are looming above them

“We’re drowning in litter!”: five days with Surfrider Bask Coast down the Gave de Pau and the Adour

For the 20th edition of the Ocean Initiatives, a number of the Surfrider Foundation Europe’s branches and offices had their hearts set on celebrating this anniversary with ambitious and relevant projects. The Bask Coast Chapter took up the challenge : for five days, from the 18th to the 22nd of March, volunteers organized and animated a descent of the Pau and Adour Gaves (rivers). From Beaucens to Anglet, they spiced up their journey with litter collections and educational animations, making it one of the most outstanding Ocean Initiatives of the inaugural weekend!


Olga Kisseleva has been chosen by Surfrider Foundation Europe to hold its first artist residency. Founder of the Art & Science lab at Université Paris 1 – Panthéon-Sorbonne, she is a pioneer of contemporary art, and is also involved in new arising forms of digital creations. Surfrider wishes to benefit from its involvement in the 2015 United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP21), which will take place this fall in Paris, by connecting her artwork to its expertise on the role of the oceans in climate regulation, the effects of climate change on marine ecosystems and the individual and collective solutions which humankind can put in place to protect them. Nature and artifice, geographic areas and virtual spaces, civic contributions and global implications will be the main themes addressed in this art installation which will explore new models of dynamic presentation and collaborative story-telling narratives. While preparing for the COP21, the aim remains unchanged: make the public question its own implication in a constantly changing environment.

It’s in the bag! E.U. deputies enact European Plastic Bag directive

On Tuesday the 28th of April 2015 in Strasburg (France), European Union deputies formally adopted the European Directive for the limitation of lightweight checkout plastic bags. As a conclusion to months of twisty negotiations between European institutions (the Directive did come close to being abandoned last autumn), its enactment is just the first step as it will actually be brought into force this coming June. Member states will then be given an 18-month time limit to transpose it into their national law.

Should cigarettes be banned from our beaches ?

Spring 2015 has not been the best for smokers so far, whether it be in the North or in the South of France! While the city of Paris decreed at the end of March that double fines will now punish the dumping of cigarette butts (as well as any other kind of trash) on the street, the city council of Biarritz made it public on the 20th of April that “Tobacco free areas” would be created in town; this decision was confirmed on the 24th. The term “Tobacco free area” refers to a label newly crafted by French Cancer League, which has not been much implemented yet: with Biarritz’s initiative, it will be premiering on the Bask coast. Among the designated zones is Port-Vieux beach, which is close to the town centre and attracts many families. Apart from the problem of tobacco as a public health issue, this measure raises the question of litter on our beaches. As a matter of fact, cigarette butts are just as harmful to the environment as they are commonly found in it. What are the best ways of fighting this battle?