If you love to soar onthe waves on your surfboard or even simply enjoy an invigorating swim at theocean, it’s the perfect time to become an activist. If something doesn’t shift quickly to assistthe healing of Earth’s oceans, they risk become very inhospitable and much morequickly than you might imagine.
To drive this point homean activist and photographer named Michael Dryland decided to make a creative and powerfulstatement of action after an upsetting incident in LA revealed to him theseverity of the pollution problem.
Dryland sharedwith BoredPanda that he made a trip out to LA in 2014 to visita surfer friend so he could photograph him in action and learn to surf thewaves himself.
On one particular morning during his trip, Dryland awoke readyto hit the beach and was much surprised when his friend quickly responded “Areyou crazy? No one goes in the water after it rains. You could get MRSA, hep C,virus, respiratory infection, etc.”
Thesparse rains in LA cause massive rainwater run offs- nearly 10 billion gallons,to seep into the sand and the ocean. These waters are filled with sewage, garbage, oil, and other hazardouswaste materials, making the waters unfit for swimming or sporting.
Unfortunatelyfor Drylan the ocean was deemed toxic for three days following the heavy rainsand as a result, he was unable to enjoy any surfing. Though he left without the surfingexperience, Dryland did leave with fresh inspiration to do something about thepollution problem. From his experiencein LA, Dryland initiated a photography project that would portray the future ofsurfing if something isn’t done to allow the oceans to heal and thrive withoutpollutants.
According to his website, theHAZMAT Surfing collection features surfers, lifeguards, and beach goers wearingHAZMAT suits to protect themselves from the contaminated watersaround Venice Beach, California.
Trueactivist.comreports, “Dryland Productions partnered with the Surfrider Foundation to raiseawareness and capture the reality of where the future of oceans might be headed if the current pollutiontrends are not remedied.”
Though imagery of Hazmat-wearing surfers isjarring, it certainly stirs discussion and allows us all the space to askourselves how we can begin to reduce our carbon footprint immediately.
All images property of Dryland Productions