Volcom Pipe Pro 2014 Sustainability Report Released

Today, we are happy to announce the release of the final sustainability report for the 2014 Volcom Pipe Pro and, for the second year running, it has been certified as a Deep Blue Surfing Event by Sustainable Surf.

Sustainable Surf describes a Deep Blue Surfing Event (DBSE) as a more “ocean friendly” event, and the criteria has been endorsed by the Association of Surfing Professionals (ASP) as it sets a clear path for reducing the environmental impacts of a professional surf contest and providing social benefits for the local community.

Each year, we have set out to improve upon the initiatives that started simply with issuing reusable water bottles to contestants and staff and using previous year’s banners to make the tote bags for said participants. It has evolved now to a carbon neutral event, running on locally produced bio-fuel, whose food, plates and utensils are chipped and layered into a Bokashi compost at the local farm.

It All Started Here

There are still things that we can improve on – we know that (and there always are, trust me), but I have to say, I’m quite proud of our progress each year.  Last year’s film Volcom Pipe Pro 2013: Sustainable by Design, by Nathan Peracciny, did such an amazing job of wrapping it all up and putting it in perspective for us.

To align with the release of the report, we’d like to announce as well, the upcoming World Premiere of the follow up to the 2013 VPP sustainability-in-surf documentary. The piece, Sustainable by Design, which is in it’s final editing stages, will once again, tell the behind the scenes story of the people that we truly could not do this without, and will highlight the sustainability initiatives, the thoughts of Volcom team riders and industry insiders as well as feature the far reaching effects that an event like this can have.

The team at Sustainable Surf has prepared a beautifully crafted report that’s concise and easy to read with just the right amount of techy stuff :) Please enjoy the full report here and comment on our New Future facebook page with any thoughts on it.

Additionally, we invite you to share the promo piece for Nathan’s upcoming 2014 documentary (which can be found here), and hope to see you on World Ocean’s Day Hawaii, June 8th at the Doris Duke Theater.

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Marie-Claire at Volcom HQ – An Update from Kering’s CSO

MCD Can Sure Draw a Crowd!

Today, we were lucky enough to get some one-on-one time with Kering’s Chief Sustainability Officer and Head of International and Institutional Affairs, Marie-Claire Daveu. After a few days at Fortune’s Brainstorm Green conference, Marie-Claire stopped by for a meeting with department heads and execs including CEO, Jason Steris and CFO, Dave Unter.

It was a chance for us to have a discussion on the progress report that Kering recently released regarding our 2016 Group Sustainability Targets as well as the state of sustainability in our marketplace, among our employees, and within the brand. It can be overwhelming addressing all that needs to be considered when lowering a company’s environmental footprint…Cotton, dyeing, energy use, emissions, waste water, transportation, packaging, paper use, etc, etc. etc. It was great, however, for everyone to be reminded of the support we have from the Sustainability Department at Kering, the momentum we’re generating within the brand in regards to sustainability, and the commitment that is coming directly from the top.

No easy road, but man, am I glad to be on it.



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Big Thanks to Partners as the Newport500 Wraps it Up!

Let the Kids Ride Free...

Hope you were able to make it out to the Newport500 this past weekend. If you did, you likely bumped into a couple of our New Future partners while you were changing tires, pit stopping, or watching kids in elementary school throw fins, and huck reverses…

A BIG thanks goes out to Newport Bay Conservancy (NBC) who was on site, with a booth staffed with volunteers reminding beach-goers of the work they do to protect Newport’s Upper Bay (which leads down to the bays/beaches of Newport). They had a watershed model and helped us remind racers of all ages, how fragile and diverse our local ecosystem is.

NBC organizes community-based native habitat restoration and other service activities that involve the public and local businesses in the stewardship of the Bay. They conduct various environmental education programs and nature tours for school and college groups and for the general public to enhance their knowledge and appreciation of the Bay and increase their awareness of the role they play in protecting the environment.

Learn more at http://newportbay.org/ and/or at www.facebook.com/newportbay

Since they were there, we figured we’d take a break from racing to present them with a check to support the 2014 Coastal Cleanup!

Stoked to Support Another Coastal Cleanup Day!

The Legend Carl Thinks NBC is #1

Another #Newport500 thank you goes out to Repreve, our partner in recycling. You can usually find Repreve recycled fibers in our boardshorts, tees, and other, but this past weekend you could find them on the beach, in the form of the recycling bins they provided for the event. Our hope was that beachgoers would be reminded that plastics can easily be recycled and often turned into new products! Their #TurnItGreen campaign reminds people that it can be fun to separate your recyclables, talk about it, and then convince friends to do the same.

DT Knows It!

These Kids Know How To Recycle!

Great Day at the Track



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Annual Ocean Sports and Fitness Day at Kalama Beach With Boys & Girls Club Hawaii

What a Day!

Once again, the Boys & Girls Club of Hawaii (BGCH) and the Outrigger Duke Kahanamoku Foundation (ODKF) Ocean Sports and Fitness Day was an awesome success.  With perfect sunny skies and fun 1-2 footers in the Kailua shore break the conditions were optimal for the youth to enjoy the ocean and learn how to surf, bodyboard, ride the SUPsquatch and learn about the Hawaiian canoe.

Volcom Hawaii surfers Tom Dosland, Kaimana Henry, Tai VanDyke, Kai Garcia, Gavin Beschen, Jason Shibata, Finn Mcgill and Jackson Bunch along with HIC, Duane Desoto from Na Kama Kai, Bank of Hawaii, the ocean safety lifeguards, the countless volunteers and many of Hawaii’s best junior surfers took the time to share their knowledge and love for the ocean with the kids.

This year the youth from Waianae, Nanakuli, Ewa Beach, Honolulu and Kailua clubhouses got the opportunity to learn from some of the best surfers about the oceans currents, basic surfing instruction and the deep history of the canoe. The waves were non-stop and so was the action.

Mahalo to Duke’s Waikiki and Jamba Juice for the lunch and refreshments. Most importantly to all of the leaders and staff at BGCH for their dedication to the youth and their futures. We at Volcom are very honored to be able to participate in a great event like this one. See you next year!

About Boys & Girls Club of Hawaii

Boys & Girls Club of Hawaii (BGCH) is a non-profit organization serving over 14,000 youngsters ages 7 to 17 annually on Oahu and Kauai, with the mission to inspire and enable youth to realize their full potential as productive, responsible and caring citizens. BGCH Clubhouses and outreach sites provide affordable membership and guidance-oriented development programs that emphasize healthy lifestyles, good character and citizenship, and academic success. BGCH is an affiliate of the Boys & Girls Clubs of America and has been operating in Hawaii since 1976. For more information, visit www.bgch.com or call (808) 949-4203.

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It’s Earth Day!

Happy Earth Day Everyone!

Alright, so we’re not having a big event of any kind…we’re not rallying for a beach clean up, we’re not spotlighting a particular product, nor are we powering down and sitting silently in the dark for 30 minutes (…but wait, that might not be a bad idea….). What we will be doing today, however, is thinking…thinking about Earth Day, thinking about the impact our products and our business have on the planet; on us. Thinking about the power that’s in our hands, thinking about what we’re doing well, and what really needs work.

Today, during our 8 Hours of Earth Day event, I’ll be sending out 8 segments of Earth Day x Sustainability related tidbits to our staff here and internationally. Some will be in the form of questions and to those that reply first, I have some fun, Reduce, ReUse, ReVolcom related prizes (only available to Volcom Employees, sorry!)

For now, if you have 6 minutes, have a look at this little video of me blabbing about what’s going on around here (on the surface, mind you) at HQ. Included in this low-budg, low-fi, hand-held, selfie video are some high fives, some call outs and some tips on things we can do today – and every day – to honor this great planet we live on ;) PS It’s not pretty, but at least the music’s good…

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A Good Friday for Skating With Kids!

Lisa Ackerman, Exec Director and Founder Having a Blast!

This past Good Friday we hosted the annual TACA Skate Day for 150 families. TACA (Talk About Curing Autism) is a national non-profit dedicated to educating, empowering and supporting families affected by autism.  We’ve helped with multiple events in the past, but this was the first time we were able to do it at the our new HQ skatepark here in Costa Mesa.

Our store Manager Bryan and the store crew opened up our Employee Store so the families could go shopping and Volcom Family & Friends came out to help: Harry from the Mail Center and a friend Jace came to teach the kids how to skate.  Hope from Accounting came to run the hat press and give out stickers.  There were bounce houses and snacks. It was really a team effort spearheaded completely (and lovingly!) by Andee one our our So Cal Sales Reps.

The families were beyond stoked and MORE than thankful. There were autistic kids who were fully skating on their own, who had learned how to skate from the first time we did this event. It was amazing to see how far they had come. It truly was a day of thanks in so many ways.

Days like this can have so much meaning…As Andee later said, “I couldn’t have made this happen without the support from everyone at Volcom. Thank you for letting me host this and giving back in a major way.” It was a good Friday, indeed…

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Volcom x Patagonia Beach Clean up and Eco Fair – Chiba, Japan

From the Sustainability Team in Japan:

Volcom x Patagonia Beach Clean up and Eco Fair
This year, Volcom and Patagonia once again got together with “local Chiba Surf Shop” CHP as well as Jean (Japan Environmental Action Network) and Surfrider Foundation – Japan for the collaborative Beach Family cleanup. In order to create a better interactive experience, following the Beach Clean up the team gathered a bunch of local vendors and educators, to also include, in the experience, an Eco Family Fair as well as a meet and greet with Volcom surf team Tomo Yoshioka, Teppei Tajima, Momo Miyasaka, and Guy Sato.

The Family Fair offered a collection of local organic produce, baked goods, organic food, educational toys, free ice-cream donated by Ben & Jerry’s and fun arts and crafts booths for the family.

With the help of JEAN we were able to showcase a TrunkMuseum (a variety of trunks (suitcases) sampling harmful waste products found in various local waters of Japan as well as trash originating in Asia and having drifted to Hawaii and California shores), A Volcom “Make a Stone man” booth, arts and crafts booth (kids were allowed to express their creativity by using everyday recycled items and trash from the house to create a Stone man with clay) and several coloring and interactive booths all educating kids and families on sustainability…An amazing event with deep meaning.

The goal is to expand this to a variety of beaches from mountain ski resorts, city parks and ocean shores with a variety of shop partnerships in each individual local spot.

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All in the Family…

Kering Sustainability 2014 from Kering on Vimeo.

So glad to hear that the work we’re doing, as a group, is getting noticed :)

And what an opportunity to be a part of a Group that has such a commitment to Sustainability and a belief that “sustainable business is smart business.” For us, it’s an amazing set up – Kering offers support in ways we likely couldn’t do on our own – the EP&L, being the first thing that comes to mind. The network of sustainability leads at all our sister brands, and the sustainability management and technical expertise staff based in Paris is world class (did I mention our sustainability lead at Kering is Dr. Helen Crowley, the company’s Ecosystem Services and Biodiversity Specialist?).

Have a look at what the Group is up to as of 2014. We’re so excited to be a part of this journey…

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Staying True to This During True to This…

Posted, But Understandably (and Occasionally) Overlooked

Wow! What a night…on Saturday, March 1st, we hosted the global premier of True to This for nearly 5,000 of our closest friends. The movie was (is) epic, and on hand were team riders, retailers, employees, and everyone in between. With an event like this comes, as you can imagine, impact…We’ve learned from Volcom Pipe Pro events and wanted to manage the footprint as best we could, but let me tell you…being sustainable-minded at a party like this is quite the task!

Hats off, though to Reid, Tyler, Kris and the others who had a hand in ensuring that we stuck to the guidelines we put out for ourselves. Lots of lessons learned with each event like this, but I’d say we did alright…Here’s a snapshot of what went right and what went wrong:

The Good:

Food & Beverage: 

Our food vendor partners Pizzanista and TK Burgers were right on point: TK served their burgers in a compostable, bagasse sugar cane pulp based clamshell. We didn’t have compost access, however, so these went to landfill. Kudos to them, however, for their choice. Also to the trash – chip bags. Pizzanista served on pizza boxes and paper plates – also for landfill, but minimal impact.

Drinking water was provided via tap, thanks to MIZU and their portable filtration unit (thanks guys!).

Cups – We chose a #1PET plastic cup for beverages. Reason – we had our waste partner Waste Management behind us to ensure we had a recycling afterwards. My estimate, 75%-80% of the cups used went to our Single-Stream recycle bin.

Food Scraps – We tried. We had 5 Food scrap recycle bins on location, but honestly, they weren’t effectively used. This was intended to feed Waste Management’s Organic Waste Program.

The Bad (or the Not as Good):

While we had recycle bins at all corners of the event, I’ve gotta be honest, it was tough managing it through the night. Thankfully, we had a “Green Team” in place and at the end of the evening, we did a recon mission, rounding up the plastics, bottles and cans for recycling. Here’s the kicker though…many of those bags ended up in our general waste bins! Not to fear, though…that’s when it’s time to dive in and get dirty!

We suited up and pulled the said recycling bags out of the waste bins, and filled a 4 yard dumpster.

The food waste program didn’t go as planned – we sent the food wast bins back, empty :(

The plastic cups – while I’m glad these were recyclable, it sure is a drag to see so many of them…Lots of beer, lots of cocktails = lots of cups.

In the end, I was happy with our diversion rate, but we can still get better. If you’ve got an event of this size planned focus on your wares, and on communicating with everyone that will have a hand in clean up. The key is getting participants to separate throughout the night – I’m open to suggestions if you have a solution for that when throwing a 4,000+ rager ;)

This Many People Means That Much Trash (Recycling!)

Wrong Bin! Recon Mission..

End Result

About True to This:
March 1st, 2014 – Volcom HQ, Costa Mesa, CA: Volcom Kicks off the “True To This” World Premiere Tour with a massive event at the Costa Mesa headquarters.

When Volcom was founded in 1991, it was the first company to combine skateboarding, surfing and snowboarding under one brand from its inception. This way of life influenced the anti-establishment style and attitude that defined a generation. The cultural phenomenon was best captured when Volcom released “Alive We Ride” in 1993: a film documentingthe raw excitement and spontaneous creativity inherent to the lifestyle. Twenty-one years later, with the release of “True To This”, Volcom again captures the energy and artistry of board-riding in its purest forms. Shot all around the world and showcasing iconic athletes, “True To This” is a tribute to the movement that inspired a generation and the people and places that embody that spirit today.

An epic film deserves an epic party and not even the torrential rains, thunderstorms and power outages could stop that from happening. An estimated 5000 people showed up to get a first look at the film, party with the volcom team and rock out to the sounds of Dahga Bloom and Church of Sun. Five hours and 50 kegs later just about everyone agreed it was one of the best premieres they had ever been to. If you missed it there is a good chance you can catch the film at a tour stop near you! Check out volcom.com/truetothis for a full list of premiere locations and pre-order your limited edition “True To This” Box Set!

Posted in By Derek Sabori, Events, Industry News, New Future, Not Simple | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Give Clean Water – From Fiji to Oahu

What was a Fiji-oriented, clean water organization doing at the Volcom Pipe Pro, you ask!? Let’s get the update from the non-profit’s founder, Darrel Larson:

Looking back on the 2014 Volcom Pipe Pro, there were a lot highlights for Give Clean Water. It was great to share with the world, the great partnership between Volcom and Give Clean Water, and our mutual commitment to sustainability.

Each day the contest ran, Give Clean Water gave live water filter demonstrations for contest attenders, and got to talk about the great contributions Volcom has made to the country of Fiji. Here’s a summary of those highlights:

Before 2012, the Fijian villages of Momi, Nabila, Yako, and Cuvu, all suffered from frequent cases of diarrhea and other water borne diseases due to contaminated water supply. In 2012 and 2013, during the Volcom Fiji Pro, VolcomTavarua Island, and Island’s Restaurants came together to donate water filters to each of these villages representing 272 families…nearly 1500 people.

Give Clean Water and the Ministry of Health followed up with every family on a monthly basis, re-educating them on the importance of using and cleaning their filters every day, and documenting changes in health. We’re happy to say, that to date, in 100% of these villages, there is clean, bacteria free drinking water in every home. There have been no outbreaks of water borne sickness in any of these villages!

Meanwhile, at the Volcom Pipe Pro:

In addition to the daily demos at the booth, Give Clean Water was able to give a sustainable clean drinking water assembly to the students and teachers of Sunset Beach elementary school. Volcom has really made a major impact on this school, donating tens of thousands of dollars towards improving the education of the children. During the assembly, kids were taken on a geographical journey to the islands of Fiji, and saw first hand, the rural water problems that exist.

The kids learned many ways in which drinking water can become contaminated, and learned how Volcom has partnered with Give Clean Water to provide a sustainable clean drinking water solution for 4 villages and 2 schools. 

The assembly was on Finals day of the contest, so after school, many of the kids came across the street to watch the finals. Tons of kids stopped by the Give Clean Water booth because they wanted to take their turn filtering dirty water through the water filter system they had just learned about! They asked lots of questions and were excited about how they could be a part of changing people’s lives in Fiji.

The Give Clean Water booth was right next to the Sustainable Coastlines Hawaii booth where kids got to learn about keeping their beaches clean while reducing plastic usage. From the booth traffic, our futures are in good hands with these kids who share a passion for a sustainable future!


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