Photo Alexis Rovira

Kiteboarders at the 15th Annual XBA Kitexpo became one of over 400 sites joining tens of thousands of other people around the world participating in the March for Science event on Earth Day. Led by Ian Mckeown, a sponsored kiteboarder and sustainability professional, riders in support of the cause took to the water for 30 minutes in amazing 20+ knot conditions as Pismo State Beach served up another classic California kiteboarding day.

Kiteboarding is an incredibly dynamic sport that truly shows the potential of science, design, and human innovation to harness nature’s power to create incredible athletic feats. Kiteboarders can ride over 40 miles an hour, jump over 50 feet, and even scale mountains, all without the direct use of fossil fuels. Kiteboard-based design is even innovating how we transport goods on tankers, and how we power our world.

When asked why he spearheaded the ‘Kite for Science’ effort, Ian responded, “We rely on science to forecast our weather, design our equipment, protect our natural playgrounds, understand our oceans, defend our health, improve our transportation and protect our climate. We joined the March because political/policy makers need to use evidence-based policy to elevate the public good. We kited out to celebrate science and all that it has given us,” adding,  “in a time where there is a trend of discrediting scientific consensus and restricting scientific truth for special interest agendas or personal opinions, we kited to raise awareness. We support the use of science to seek answers, and free flow of information to encourage innovation and ultimately defend and protect our planet to benefit the health of all.”

Kiteboarders also helped clean the beach for the weekend collecting debris both on the beach and as they rode. A pile of trash was displayed at the registration area during the weekend in support of Earth Day and to showcase that collectively, we can make a big difference.

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