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PRESS RELEASE: What can we do with 8m tons of ocean plastics?

16 February 2015 12:01


Rising levels of ocean plastics have been in the press all weekend – an estimated 8 million tons of plastic are dumped in the ocean each year and those levels are increasing. What, practically, can we do about it? Riz Boardshorts are working with the Marine Conservation Society, the recycling industry and other brands to find a use for those plastics and to turn them into beautiful beachwear.

PRESS RELEASE 16/02/2015


London based sustainable surf brand Riz Boardshorts are spearheading practical attempts to tackle the rising levels of plastic waste along the UK coastline by transforming ocean plastics into beautiful beach products.

Studies released over the weekend by the University of Georgia show an estimated 8 million tons of plastics are dumped in the ocean each year, the equivalent to five grocery bags filled with plastic for every foot of coastline in the world.

By 2020, the volumes of plastic headed towards the ocean are estimated to increase tenfold. Plastic waste affects marine life, including dolphins, sea birds and turtles, which become entangled or choked by the plastics. When broken down to smaller particles of less than a millimetre, those plastics can be ingested by smaller organisms and, ultimately, end up in human food chains. The study has emphasised the need to prevent plastic waste from reaching the oceans, calling on an increase in recycling and reuse of plastics by industry and consumers. In the immediate term, however, there is much that can be done to collect the plastic waste, prevent it reaching the ocean and find practical uses for it.

British-based brand Riz Boardshorts is spearheading this immediate work to transform ocean plastics into textiles. Working with the Marine Conservation Society’s Marine Litter Action Network, the brand has a mission to turn bottles into boardshorts, expanding their current line of boardshorts made from recycled polyester to include shorts made from ocean plastics by 2016. Network members, including charities collecting beach plastics, the recycling industry and clothing brands, will meet this month to develop an action plan for 2015 that will take practical steps towards transforming ocean plastics into beautiful beachwear.

Founded by sailor Ali and surfer Riz, Riz Boardshorts is a soulful yet sartorial surf brand, produced and sourced in revolutionary ways.

“We believe in protecting what we love and, through the development of Riz Boardshorts, it is our mission to transform beach and ocean plastics into beautiful products. We are turning to the public to help us achieve this, because we realise that it will take a movement to truly change the industry.” Says Ali

The Riz team are currently crowdfunding to invest in the transformation of ocean plastics into textiles. Supporters who visit the Riz Boardshorts crowdfunding campaign on will be rewarded with beautiful shorts and T-shirts, products from the upcoming collection, and one-of-a-kind opportunities including creating their own bespoke pair of Riz Boardshorts. Every supporter who purchases a T-shirt or pair of shorts, is entered into a prize draw to win the “Riz Ticket” - a fabulous session for three at The Wave: Bristol with coaching and photography.

For more information on the Riz campaign, please visit Riz’s kriticalmass fundraising page: or support them via Twitter @Rizboardshorts or Facebook

For more information on the Marine Conservation Society and their Marine Litter Action Network, please visit:

The Riz team are currently looking for partners to help them transform ocean plastics into textiles. If you could help, please contact Riz on

For any further questions or queries please contact: Riz Boardshorts- +44 (0) 7949 214 970

Thanks so much.
Lou Herring
Sustainability and Ethics
Riz Boardshorts
+44 7949 214 970
Take a look at our crowdfunding site -

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Riz was born with a deep connection to the ocean. We grew up on the beautiful coastline of Devon, sailing and surfing. As adults, we studied design and natural sciences then moved into fashion and finance but never lost our love of the seas or our connection to nature.

Our mission is to make beautiful boardshorts for a plastic-free ocean. We design stylish, and sustainable mid and long-length surf shorts with prints inspired by nature that don't harm the environment. As we’ve grown older, we’ve realised how vital the oceans are for the survival of our planet. Sadly, our oceans and beaches are littered with waste plastics. Experts estimate that there are 46,000 pieces of plastic in every square mile of the ocean. We don't want our shorts to end up littering landfills or oceans. So, in an effort to do our part, we’ve developed the Rizcycling programme.

Rizcycling means working with our customers to create a perpetual loop that transforms waste and worn out surfing and swimming shorts into beautiful new products. Today, our board shorts for men and women are made from recycled and recyclable fabrics. We also encourage our customers to donate their old and unwanted swimwear for us to reuse or rehome. Our new goal is to create 100% recycled and recyclable, tailored swim shorts and to use marine litter - beach and ocean plastics - to make luxury boardshorts.

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