Whilst "eco-friendly" surfboards (I'm referring to the variants that use alternative foam and resin formulations) have been on the radar here for many moons, they haven't really gotten close to being mainstream - yet. Perceived price, cheap pop-outs from Chinatown and performance issues may have stalled acceptance but actually finding board shops that will sell you something greener is rather hit and miss.
So hats, socks and anything else you fancy taking off to Mark Thorn and the boys from Piran Surf in Perranporth who've been working hard to showcase their "Piran Acorn EcoBoards." Using soya-based foams and resin made from linseed oil - all sourced locally from Cornish suppliers - it's a step in the right direction. Judging by the number of these boards I've spotted - encouragingly in the paws of fresh faced groms -they're selling well. To reinforce the environmental message, each board comes with an acorn to plant, nurture and grow into a tree all ready for some hugging - sweet.
For a different take on this - there's always recycling. Quick cut to last night. Beach Bum's sitting in a Surf Lifesaving Club meeting with a rack of dinged and damp Rescue Boards behind him drying out, awaiting repairs. Your Rescue Board's a bit of a beastie - there's a lot of foam in there - there needs to be, of course. Where do old Rescue Boards go when they're past repair, I wondered? They go to Burt, of course. Seriously, this clip is one to file under "L" for legendary.
"With the help of an eco-warrior and a legendary surfboard shaper, professional surfer Jake Boex will attempt to recycle a battered old 'surf rescue board' into a modern high performance surfboard using only only ecologically sound materials, resulting in the world's first ever environmentally friendly surfboard, 'The Recycler'"
When Burt tells us that "styrene actually kills brain cells so it's like serious alcohol abuse" I couldn't help but wonder if he was talking from experience. No matter, Burt is the dude of dudes!
If you watched all that, you'll have caught the bit about using nettles, smoked turmeric and paprika as natural colourants for the spray job. Sounds good enough to eat. One curried surfboard please. That would be the ultimate recycling, eh? Maybe next time Laird Hamilton bites into a surfboard he can swallow and shit it out later. If that sounds far-fetched ... read this and wonder.