The Associated Press
SAN JUAN CAPISTRANO, Calif.–A California surfer has won a recycled surfboard contest with an entry covered with 10,000 cigarette butts.
“This is the most polluted item picked up on the beach,” creator Taylor Lane told the Orange County Register.
“And no one thinks twice that you can do anything with it.”
Lane, 24, from Santa Cruz, had the top entry amid an assortment of boards made from potato sacks, used packaging, and stuff picked up from Dumpster dives.
The entries were for the third-annual “Creators & Innovators Upcycle Contest,” hosted by the Vissla surfing gear brand and the non-profit Surfrider Foundation.
A dozen entries were displayed last Friday at the Ecology Center in San Juan Capistrano.
“Who would have thought cigarette butts would have been beautiful?” said visitor Karyn Buky of Rancho Santa Margarita, Calif.
Lane and his friend, Ben Judkins, spent the summer plucking butts from the sand, beach parking lots, and local paths in Santa Cruz.
The board also uses Styrofoam from fish markets.
“It’s visually disgusting–but awesome in how gross it is,” Judkins said.
“It just ties together surfing and something we care about–the environment, the ocean, and the health of the ocean.”