The threat of global warming and plastic littering to our home planet’s ecosystem is a real and present danger. Whereas its effects on land are obvious through desertification and dying wildlife, climate change’s impact on the ocean ecosystem might go unnoticed to the average public. However, scientists and water sport enthusiasts understand this and should be at the forefront of reversing the trend.
The vast ocean bodies absorb about 90 percent of the heat generated by the greenhouse effect raising water temperatures and affecting marine life adversely.
Raised temperatures and plastic litter affect marine habitats leading to deaths, changes in breeding habits, species characteristics, metabolism, and life cycles besides forced migrations, especially from the continental shelves and corals to deeper waters. So, dive into the sea of plastic and see what you can do about it.
Diving into the plastic vortex
One man, Ben Lecomte, dove into the world’s largest plastic waste dump in the ocean appropriately called the great pacific garbage patch, illustrating how scuba diving as a profession can help in conservation efforts.
The patch is an area in the open sea with powerful spinning currents that pull in and trap garbage in a massive vortex twice the size of Texas. Virtually all of these are plastic in various forms, posing a serious threat to marine life.
Plastic is not biodegradable and can only break down to small particles known as microplastics that pose an even greater danger to sea life as they are ingestible.
Whereas one man dove in and brought the report, another decided to do something about it by creating the first of its kind buoyant trash-sweeping device. Towed across the polluted waters, the device can sweep 600 meters wide and three meters deep without trapping sea animals.
Do something about single-use plastics
Disposable plastic is the single most dangerous threat to both marine and land ecosystems. Single-use plastic containers discarded on beaches are blown into the sea by wind or washed in by rainwater. Seafarers carelessly toss used plastic cups overboard without a second thought seeding the ocean with harmful objects.
However, you can start doing something about this menace. Decline service when offered in disposable plastics that include cups, straws, plates, and water bottles explaining why and recommending that the businesses try alternative material.
Cut down on the use of other plastics like take-out containers, plastic bags, and dry-cleaning bags for reusable and biodegradable alternatives to save our ecosystem.
Drop the use of products containing microbeads
Microbeads are small plastics used in personal care products like facial scrubs and toothpaste. Known as polyethylene and polypropylene, they are also made from petrochemical plastics for use in consumer products. As they are washed down drains, they eventually end up in water bodies absorbing toxins as they float about.
Fish and other marine animals are unable to distinguish between these toxic particles and food, ingest them and suffer from blocked guts or other serious problems. You can do something about curbing these harmful consumer habits by checking labels of what you buy.
As written in one of the reviews of the dissertation writing services for Buy Assignment Online in 2020, “Avoid any products that contain polypropylene and polyethylene as ingredients on their label to discourage manufacture. Remember that you too eat fish and these toxins can be transferred up the food chain causing health problems.”
Practice safe disposal by recycling
If you must use plastics, take care to go for types that are safe for recycling to minimize the entry of more junk into the ecosystem. Whenever buying products packaged in plastics, check the recycle logo on it and the number indicated.
In most cases, the logos will have numbers and letters like PETE, HDPE, LDPE, and PP, all covering a wide range of products with plastic elements in them. These classes comprise products like water bottles, detergent packaging, bags, or cloths, and are easier to recycle.
However, categories marked with PVC that include pipes and toys, PS that cover Styrofoam products are hard to recycle. Always check this classification on plastics that you must use and store them with care for later disposal, preferably at a recycling center near you.
Follow ban guidelines
If your local authority has put in place a ban on any particular class of plastics, show your civic duty by obeying to help save our environment. Businesses and manufacturers must especially be at the forefront of ensuring such bans succeed by adopting alternative materials for packaging products and encouraging their customers to bring reusable containers for take-out.
Civic authorities seriously need legislation to curb wanton use of plastics not only for environmental benefits but also for the management of physical infrastructure that includes storm drains and municipal sewerage systems.
Windblown litter blocks drainage vents and clogs sewerage systems costing the taxpayer unnecessarily in added labor. Waste management is also complicated when a large portion of it is non-biodegradable. The alternative disposal that may include incineration is even more harmful as it releases toxic gases into the atmosphere.
Do something, help cleanup
Do not stand by and watch helplessly as harmful garbage piles on your favorite beach, forcing you off as it kills marine life. Volunteer by joining local citizen initiatives or better still organize one yourself and help restore our seacoasts. If the beaches and coastlines are free of harmful litter, none gets windblown or flood-swept into the seas.
“Enjoin friends and family for beach cleanup initiatives as a form of weekend fun. If you do this frequently, the chances are that other beach users will join in,” says Britany Stein, the green specialist at Buy Assignment, in her research for blogs and social media for essay writing service reviews.
Those that are reluctant to join will, on the other hand, exercise care and dispose of their plastics in designated points to avoid offending you. You must play your part in environmental preservation for children and future generations.
Join plastic cleanup organizations
Ocean Conservancy’s International Coastal Cleanup works with volunteers to carry out its cleaning campaigns along the world’s shorelines.
You can find out more about them online and sign up to participate in organized cleanup operations or through individual effort on beaches near you. You will also get an app, the Clean Swell, by which you will document data of what trash you collect for impact assessment.
This is just one of many such organizations across the world fighting plastic pollution in our seas. Search on the internet for those that operate in your area and sign up to boost their service. Whatever the case, do not just look on in consternation, do something to save our oceans.
Our bad consumer habits have contributed to the increasing plastic pollution in our oceans. We need to change now, clean up our seas and coastlines for the conservation of our marine life heritage. It all starts with you, so do something now!