NTEMID
Health

Life Below Water

For the record, I lllooovvvveeeee fish

And not swimming

Photo credit: e360.yale.edu

That is literally, by the way

So, why are we here today?

Why, though?

Photo credit: undp.org

Oceans provide key nat­ural resources including food, medicines, biofuels and other products. They help with the breakdown and removal of waste and pollution, and their coastal ecosystems act as buffers to reduce damage from storms. Maintaining healthy oceans supports climate change mitigation and adaptation efforts.

Photo credit: sdgyoungvoices.org

And have you been to the sea­side? Gosh, it’s something you just can’t really understand till you see it.

 It’s also a great place for tourism and recreation.

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Even more, Marine Protected Areas contrib­ute to poverty reduc­tion by increasing fish catches and income, and improving health. They also help improve gen­der equality, as women do much of the work at small-scale fisheries.

Photo credit: worldwildlife.org

 

The marine environment is also home to a stun­ning variety of beautiful creatures, ranging from single-celled organisms to the biggest animal ever to have lived on the Earth–the blue whale. They are also home to coral reefs, one of the most diverse eco­systems on the planet.

People come to see the body of a 90 foot female blue whale that washed up on Agate Beach in Bolinas, Calif. Friday, May 26, 2017. (Jocelyn Knight/Special to the Marin Independent Journal)

Here is where the problem, for us all, is…. Increasing levels of debris or waste material in the world’s oceans are having a major environ­mental and economic impact. Marine debris impacts biodiversity through entanglement or ingestion of debris items by organisms, which can kill them or make it impossible for them to reproduce.

Photo credit: news.nationalgeographic.org

As far as the world’s coral reefs are concerned, about 20 per cent of them have been effectively destroyed and show no hopes for recovery. About 24 per cent of the remaining reefs are under imminent risk of collapse through human pressures, and a further 26 per cent are under a longer -term threat of collapse.

Furthermore, improper management of our marine waters results in overfishing. The lost economic ben­efits from the fisheries sector are estimated to be around US$50 bil­lion annually!

 The UN Environment Programme estimates the cumulative economic impact of poor ocean management prac­tices is at least US$200 billion per year. In the absence of mitigation measures, climate change will increase the cost of damage to the ocean by an additional US$322 billion per year by 2050! So, whatever you do, have this in mind and heart.

Photo credit: nature.org

To correct this, the Convention on Biological Diversity suggests that scaled up actions to sus­tain the global ocean require a US$32 billion one-time public cost and US$21 billion dollars a year for recurring costs.

Photo credit: ia.one.un.org

Here is what we can do…

For the Open Ocean and deep sea areas, sustainabil­ity can be achieved only through increased inter­national cooperation to protect vulnerable hab­itats. Establishing com­prehensive, effective and equitably managed sys­tems of government-pro­tected areas should be pursued to conserve biodiversity and ensure a sustainable future for the fishing industry.

Photo credit: newsdeeply.com

On a local level, we should make ocean-friendly choices when buying prod­ucts or eating food derived from oceans and con­sume only what we need. Selecting certified products is a good place to start.

Photo credit: medicalnewstoday.com

Making small changes in our daily lives, like taking public transport and unplugging elec­tronics saves energy. These actions reduce our carbon footprint, a factor that contributes to rising sea levels.

Photo credit: entrepreneur.com

We should eliminate use of plastic as much as possible and orga­nize clean-ups of our beaches!

Photo credit: dnaindia.com

Most importantly, we can spread the message about how important marine life is and why we need to protect it.

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Who are you waiting for?

ntemid
5 years ago

If you don’t like me no more, please let me know now!

ntemid
1 year ago

Given the chance….

ntemid
12 months ago
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