If you’re like me and were born with more surfer than skater in you, you may not have ever had the chance to learn that concrete skateparks are often made with a styrofoam core…that’s eps (extruded polystyrene), the same stuff eps surfboard blanks are made. This summer, I learned this when Remy Stratton, VP of Skateboarding came to me asking, “What should I do with this leftover styrofoam from the skatepark?” I thought it would be a few blocks of packaging and we’d dump it into the Waste to Waves box we have in the breakroom. Nope – have a look:I immediately called our buddies at Sustainable Surf, creators of the Waste to Waves program – I said, “Let’s tell a story here. Let’s turn this Waste into waves!”
Meanwhile, back here in Costa Mesa, I had recently, done some window shopping at Threads & Fins where I saw the amazing shapes of Matt Parker at Album surfboards. I looked him up, and asked if he was part of the ECOboard project. While he’d used Marko foam and dabbled with Entropy epoxy he hadn’t yet done a certified “ECOboard.” He was game, and the journey was on…Sustainable Surf meet Album Surboards, Album, meet Sustainable Surf.
After a little back and forth, and coordinating of schedules, the team at Marko made a few pickups here at HQ. If you haven’t seen the process of recycling eps packaging into surfboard blanks, check it out, it’s great:
In theory, here’s what happened: we shipped Marko Foam a batch of recyclable styrofoam, we got a recycled eps blank back, ready to shape. Blank went to Matt/Album, where the magic was worked. Based on ECOboard criteria, the board was glassed and sanded and hand delivered to HQ – in theory, a near complete circle. The tool I’ve been using to ride waves theoretically owes its life to the scraps that were generated from our skate program…not a bad story. Oh, and by the way, the boardbag? Repurposed vinyl (not ours yet…) crafted into a great bag contributed by the team at The Progress Project. Stay tuned for a Volcom x Progress project.
The board is a 5′ 6″ Riot, with a 5-fin set up, beautifully colored. Certified ECOboard #1402. Big thanks to Sustainable Surf, Marko foam, Matt Parker and Noah at The Progress Project for making the journey so rewarding…and thanks Remy, for the great skatepark!
So what’s your next board made of?
Check to see if your shaper is already on board: http://www.sustainablesurf.org/ecoboard/shapers/