The renowned naturalist, David Attenborough once said in an interview that “We may think we live a long way from the oceans, but we don’t. What we actually do here, and in the middle of Asia and wherever, has a direct effect on the oceans – and what the oceans do then reflects back on us.”
Calling all protectors of the ocean: This is a crucial time for humankind to work above and beyond to repair the damage we, as humans have caused to our beloved oceans. “Why is it so essential for us to protect our oceans?” you might ask. Join us, as we speak to Stacie Vanags, our local ocean protector from Venice Beach.
Stacie Vanags, our local ocean protector from Venice Beach, surfer, Aguavida Water lover, Salted Spirit Podcaster, has made it her lifelong goal to leave the ocean cleaner than she found it as well as leaving it in a state of thriving. Stacie, who transitioned out of the fashion industry to pursue what she felt more connected to which, was her love for the ocean! She started her podcast, Salted Spirit to give a platform to the people, women in particular, to share their stories and experiences. She said “this podcast is 100% inspired by my love for surfing, respect for the ocean, and more importantly all the kick ass women out there crushing the status quo and living life on their own terms.”
Prior to her podcast, Stacie had a fashion label and lived in the mid west for 15 years where she wasn’t constantly surrounded by water. She soon came to discover that the fashion industry is one of the leading factors to ocean destruction. According to Alternatives Journal, “An estimated 17 to 20 percent of total industrial water pollution comes from textile dyeing and treatment – and approximately 8,000 synthetic chemicals are used throughout the world to turn raw materials into textiles. Many of those chemicals will be released into freshwater sources.”
So, what inspires Stacie to protect our ocean?
Overfishing and plastic pollution are amongst the main reasons why our oceans are degrading. Stacie thinks about her niece and nephew, the future generation who will be affected by all this. According to the Environmental Defense Fund (EDF), “overfishing endangers ocean ecosystems and the billions of people who rely on seafood as a key source of protein.” She became part of the Surfrider Foundation, where she ensures beaches are accessible, by keeping our water clean and preserves our coasts by keeping plastic from polluting our waterways. As an active member, Stacie participates in beach cleanups where she, along with many other volunteers removed a prodigious amount of trash from our coastal beaches. By releasing Salted Spirit, Stacie expands on the importance of keeping our oceans clean and protecting it by educating others about the dangers of overfishing and how the plastic pollution in our oceans impact us. She calls this her Big Hairy Audacious Goal (BHAG).
Many people surrounding Stacie do not know that she has a past experience of 15 years in working in the mental health and substance abuse. With a degree in psychology, she landed her first job out of college at a crisis call center. She constantly dealt with people with psychological issues such as being suicidal or trying to detox substances from their system. One of the main reasons Stacie started to drink Aguavida is when she researched that many of the substances being used whether it is over-the-counter (OTC) drugs, prescribed, or even other illegal substances, end up in our water that we drink. According to Harvard Health, water quality experts are increasingly concerned about another kind of water pollution: chemicals from prescription drugs and over-the-counter medications that get into lakes, rivers, and streams. Water also gets contaminated by perfume, cologne, skin lotions, and sunscreens that wash off people’s skin.”
Stacie also decided that in order to achieve her BHAG and become a true ocean protector, she had to start making the changes in her personal life which is why she started drinking Aguavida Premium Alkaline Water where she gets her 3-gallon bottles delivered right to her doorsteps. “I love Aguavida because their solution to plastic is incredible; not only is it sustainable but the water tastes crisp and amazing!” She always wondered that people sometimes tend to be obsessed with organic meat, vegetables, and fruits, but never think twice about knowing what’s in their drinking water. Her advice to everyone is to do your research and look at facts to make yourself and those around you informed about the importance of not only organic food but also the importance of your drinking water.
As an active ocean protector, join Stacie Vanags this coming Sunday, February 18, 2018 at the beach cleanup at Sunset Point from 10AM-1PM.
We won’t keep you thirsty because Aguavida will also be there providing you complimentary alkaline water!