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Open Access Publications from the University of California

Punta Colorada: The Value of a Wave


This project explores the potential of dedicated and environmentally-aware recreation communities to be an effective lobbying organization for protecting the marine environment. Like other aspects of ecotourism, the surf community has significant leverage with their monetary, social and political resources and commitment, to be an effective broker for conservation objectives. Surf sites are also fixed features that are vulnerable to human impact and development. Here, I explore the power of the surf community to protect a vulnerable surf location at Puerto Escondido, Mexico. This case study exemplifies the economic value of “the wave” and details a novel approach for protecting vulnerable environmental sites by activating environmentally-conscious recreation collectives.

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