We know, we know, neoprene is bad for the environment...
Recent documentaries and articles filled with hard hitting scary words in the surf press tell us this. In particular the production of petroleum based neoprene is under the environmental microscope for a number of damning reasons. And whilst this might not even be on the radar for most wetsuit users, it is firmly on our radar, like wax on a wetsuit.
Neoprene production is not an easy process to do cleanly, and because of that at Seventhwave we use what we consider to be the most environmentally conscious - non petroleum based - neoprene available in the world; and until a natural replacement that hits performance markers that we demand from our wetsuit material arrives on the market i.e. fast drying, flexible, low water retention, reasonable affordability, warmth, ease of repair, and DURABILITY we will continue to use Yamamoto neoprene from Japan.
We do all that we can in the production of our new wetsuits to be as kind environmentally as we can be. So lets now talk about repairs and why we dedicate a lot of time to repairing wetsuits of all brands and styles.
We love seeing our old suits land back instore for a check up. Some that are 20 years old or more which shows that by taking good care of your wetsuit you will preserve its life and ultimately that prevents your suit ending up in the bin prematurely and in landfill for eternity.
But, we get it, fin chops happen, tears and rips happen, zips break, velcro stops velcro-ing and suits just get worn out, so that's where repairs come in.
Repairing a wetsuit offers several environmental benefits:
- Reduces waste: By repairing a wetsuit instead of discarding it and buying a new one, you help reduce the amount of waste that would otherwise end up in landfills or incinerators. This is particularly important considering that wetsuits are usually made of non-biodegradable materials - neoprene.
- Conservation of resources: Big brand Wetsuits are primarily made from petroleum-based neoprene, which requires significant energy and natural resources to produce. By repairing and extending the lifespan of a wetsuit, you reduce the demand for new raw materials, thereby conserving resources and reducing the environmental impacts associated with extraction and processing.
- Energy savings: The manufacturing process of wetsuits involves various energy-intensive procedures, including extraction, refining, and processing of raw materials. Additionally, transportation and packaging also require energy. Repairing a wetsuit instead of purchasing a new one reduces the overall carbon footprint associated with the manufacturing and distribution process.
- Reduces emissions: Repairing a wetsuit reduces the need for new wetsuit production, which in turn reduces emissions of greenhouse gases and other pollutants associated with the manufacturing process. By reducing carbon emissions, repairing a wetsuit helps combat climate change and air pollution.
Preserves marine ecosystems: Marine ecosystems are fragile and vulnerable to pollution and habitat destruction. Wearing a repaired wetsuit allows you to continue enjoying activities like diving, surfing, or snorkeling
you help contribute to a cleaner ocean with reduced plastic waste and pollution that can harm marine life, helping to preserve biodiversity.
Overall, repairing a wetsuit is an eco-friendly choice that helps minimize waste, conserve resources, reduce emissions, and preserve our precious natural ecosystems.
So if your wetsuits needs a once over, a checkup, a W.O.F, a nip and a tuck, some botox, bring it in and we will try to get another few seasons injected into it.