Kelly Slater Disgusted by the State of Bali’s Beaches

Kuta in Bali has long been known for being a popular surf destination and it was even listed in third place on a CNN news story about the best surf spots in the world.  However pro surfer Kelly Slater has urged the Balinese to do something about the pollution situation both on and around the beaches before it soon becomes impossible to surf in the area.

Kelly Slater Bali

Speaking to over 11,000 Twitter followers on Sunday, Slater said the problem was the worst he had ever seen and urged people to #DoSomething.  When asked to further elaborate on the state of the beaches and the surf Slater said that he had seen needles, medical waste, and plastic all of which are hazardous to both humans and marine life.

Bali based surf operator Lee Walsh said that pollution has been a problem on Bali for a long time.  He claims that the worst areas at present are on the western side of the island which includes everything from Kuta Bay up to Canggu.  Mass overbuilding has been happening in these two places to try and cater to higher levels of tourists however all of the waste from the building projects is being returned to the sea which is ruining the once extremely popular surf destination.

Kelly Slater Bali

A spokesman for the South East Asia branch of Quiksilver, Holly Monkman, has also blamed the pollution on Bali’s tourism boom however she claims that the situation is not as bad as it is being made out to be.  She claims the Quiksilver company is running education programs for locals as well as actively helping to clean the beaches on a daily basis and that “Bali is still the best island for fun and surf”.  We can’t help but wonder what she sees that nobody else does?

What we do know is that Bali’s tourism figures have quadrupled in the last five years and if something isn’t soon done about the problem, the devastation that is unleashed may be horrific.  Have you visited Bali recently or do you live there?  Please let us know what you think about the pollution situation in the comments below.

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4 Responses to Kelly Slater Disgusted by the State of Bali’s Beaches

  1. Jolande says:

    Check midway film for what pollution does. It is a sad state of affairs and I hope something is done soon.

  2. Johnny says:

    I’m glad to see Kelly Slater bring attention to this issue. He’s using his celebrity and stature in surf culture to do good, and that’s great!

  3. Gary Darby says:

    As the Director of the Green Island Project, our initial mission has been to clean up the Oceans from the mass pollution created by civilization. As we further got into the key issues, we found that the majority of pollution itself is caused by an insufficient garbage disposal infrastructure and sewage system from originating countries. Our first clean-up design was focused on the Yamuna River in Deli… We designed a process that would remove the sources of contamination from the ocean while at the same time providing clean water for the native people to enjoy. Another part of the clean-up was the use of specially designed equipment that would pick up and remove garbage from the shoreline (items as small as cigarette butts and other unwanted items. What we ran into was the politics and government resistance to take action… for a fraction of the cost that the local government was currently throwing at the issue; we would have been able to remediate the situation long term. Our interest is to get in and set up the infrastructure and processes of clean-up and then give the operation over to the local government or a local business to maintain. Then we monitor the situation for a year to make sure it stays on track.

    What I see here is a similar situation in the need for a proper long term solution. This situation can be accomplished in Singapore back in the 1970’s. But it takes the government/ Ministry the understanding and awareness that by spending for long term solutions, more money will flow into the coffers long term. Because they also took the initiative, these government officials will get all the credit and international recognition for their actions. The world will take notice.

    We have already put together a similar project designed to return a limited space environment such as an Island back to a environmentally sound state. We can do it here as well if there is the motivation and desire by those in control want it to happen.

  4. Kayak Dealer says:

    I heard that it’s a problem that affects a lot of the popular beaches lately. And it doesn’t help that the most beautiful places are actually remote and are mostly inhabited by families that are impoverished. Hopefully there would be regular upkeep from both the local residents and the government, otherwise a lot of our treasured spots will be a makeshift wasteland.

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