There’s nothing better than a great lobster roll or some yummy salmon, but to catch the fish we all love to eat, the seafood industry often employs heavy plastic netting, hundreds of tons of which end up in the ocean due to the difficulty and expense of proper disposal. This is where Kevin Ahearn, Ben Knepper and David Stover come in. Interested in sustainability, the three friends decided to do something about the growing problem of plastic pollution in the ocean.
Bureo Skateboards is a project designed to turn used plastic netting into one-of-a kind skateboards. The project began in 2013 with the establishment of a fishnet collection and recycling program in Chile called “Net Positiva,” the first of its kind in the country that produces the seventh largest catch in the world.
The trio then turned to the Internet, launching a Kickstarter campaign to raise the funds necessary to move into final production of the fish-shaped skateboards. The campaign was wildly successful, raising more than double its $25,000 goal, which will allow Bureo to ship the skateboards, available in both the U.S. and Canada, starting in August. The $135 cruiser boards, called “Minnows” and designed to be used both as transportation and recreation, will be produced in Chile, which supports the local communities Bureo has been working with.
Each board contains the equivalent of 30 square feet of plastic fishnet, and Bureo hopes to eventually expand to more areas in Chile.
The name “Bureo” comes from the language of a native Chilean group, the Mapuche, and translates to “the waves.” Just as a single wave can cause enough ripples to eventually create a tsunami, Bureo Skateboards hopes that their project will be just the start of a series of changes that will grow into a fundamental difference in how we dispose of our trash and treat the ocean.
Would you buy a Minnow? What do you do to help keep the oceans clean? Let us know in the comments below!