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Beach Grit


Is the owner of WSL an ecological terrorist?

Chas Smith

by Chas Smith

Even more frightening, is professional surfing becoming Scientology?

A new and disturbing article appeared yesterday in the FreeRide Voice. You can and should read it here, but seeing that you are a BeachGrit man, I will sum up. Dirk Ziff, the Floridian who effectively owns the World Surf League, also owns a shale oil concession in Queensland that will do massive damage to the Great Barrier Reef.

Shale oil extraction, as you already know because you are a BeachGrit Man, has a four times bigger carbon footprint than traditional drilling. Dioxins, silt, etc. all flow from the extraction site, down rivers and settle on the reef, killing corals and sea life.

It is a very big bummer and the FreeRide Voice points out the absurdity of owning a business that does such great damage to the ocean and one that requires the relative health of the ocean. Most surfers, be they far left or far right, understand the delicate nature of the sea and our connection to it. Apparently Mr. Ziff does not?

With such troublesome news circling, it would seem that either Ziff or WSL CEO Paul Speaker would address the media, dismissing the story as absurd or explaining how shale oil will free western democracies from the tyranny of the Middle East or that extra measures are being taken to insure the health of the reef because surfers love reefs or something. But there is only ever silence from the WSL.

You know who else there is only silence from? Scientology’s leader David Miscavige. Is professional surfing the new Scientology? Is Graham Stapelberg busily penning a follow up to Dianetics? Should all surfers be on the Bridge to Total Freedom?

What an even bigger bummer!