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World Oceans Day

World Oceans Day is observed every year on June 8 to promote ocean conservation and to increase public awareness of the ocean's importance. The ocean spans more than 70% of Earth's surface and is critical to the existence of all life. 


The oceans produce over 50% of the planet's oxygen and are critical for trade, tourism, and transport. It also supplies us with food, renewable energy, and medicines. Despite being aware of the crucial importance of the oceans, humans continue to exploit and pollute them at an alarming rate. The purpose of World Oceans Day is to put an end to the senseless overuse and exploitation of the ocean, as well as to develop long-term sustainable solutions for its preservation.

Facts you need to know about ocean pollution    

    •  12 million tones of plastic finds its way into the ocean every single year.

    • Agricultural runoff and untreated sewage – account for approximately 80% of the rubbish in our oceans.

    • 20% of marine pollution comes from ocean-based activities like shipping, Offshore drilling, fishing etc.

    •  More than 171 trillion pieces of plastic are now floating in our oceans                                                                                    

    • Plastic pollution kills 100,000 marine mammals every year

  

    • Mining corporations dump 220 million tons of hazardous waste straight into oceans, rivers, and lakes annually.

    • Plastic waste makes up 80% of all marine pollution

    • Microplastics have been found in more than 100 aquatic species, many of which are caught for human consumption.

    • Microplastics have been discovered in over 100 aquatic species, many of which are harvested for human consumption.


  Ways to save the Ocean

    1. Avoid single-use plastic

Avoiding plastics is the most crucial step toward ocean conservation because plastics are responsible for the majority of ocean pollution. Instead, use reusable bags and containers. 

    2. Recycle Plastics Properly

Taking steps to ensure plastic is recycled correctly is the most important course of action if you can't avoid using plastics. 

    3. Participate in beach clean-ups

It is particularly vital to participate in clean-ups on beaches since these are the places that are very near to the ocean and where trash accumulates.

    4. Reduce Your Carbon Footprint 

Switch to greener energy sources and limit your use of fossil fuels. Try to commute via an electric bike, scooter, or public transport.

    5. Support organizations that protect the ocean 

Volunteering and raising awareness about the need for ocean conservation is critical.


Marine Animals under the threat from ocean pollution

Marine life has suffered greatly as a result of pollution and overfishing. There are several issues affecting aquatic life, such as ruined aquatic habitats and massive overhunting of whole species. Here are some marine life that are endangered because of ocean pollution.


    1. Laysan albatrosses

Birds ingesting plastic in the water have long been an issue, but for Laysan albatrosses, the situation is even more serious. A research found that 97% of Laysan albatrosses chicks consume large amounts of plastic, resulting in stomach scarring, lead poisoning, and other medical conditions. For the usually starved birds, the floating plastic coated in algae becomes an alluring snack.

    2. Hawksbill Turtles

Hawksbill Turtles are a critically endangered turtle species found across the world's seas. However, throughout the previous two centuries, millions of the species have died as a result of illicit fishing and habitat destruction, leaving a global population of around 20,000-23,000. The increase in water pollution in the ocean has damaged coral reefs that offer crucial nesting sites, pushing the species to the edge of extinction. 

    3. Yangtze Finless Porpoise

The Yangtze River, which flows through China, is the third-longest in the world and the longest in Eurasia. It accounts for over 20% of China's GDP and is the country's main waterway. However, as China increasingly industrialized, its pollution and waste disposal rendered it one of the world's most polluted rivers, destroying numerous marine ecosystems. The Yangtze Finless Porpoise population has declined quickly, from 2500 in 1991 to only 1040 in 2017. The dumping of heavy industrial trash and plastic pollution is the primary cause of this precipitous fall.

    4.  Harlequin Frog

Atelopus, sometimes known as the harlequin frog, is a genus of frogs, with the majority of its species highly endangered and 40% extinct. They can thrive in freshwater and coastal areas, but when river streams become contaminated with industrial waste and other pollutants, they lose their habitat and struggle to survive. They have also been the victims of widespread fungal infections, which have further reduced their populations. 

    5. Hawaiian Monk Seal 

The Hawaiian Monk Seal is one of the world's oldest seal species, with a significant population located on the island of Hawaii. It is an endangered species, with just around 1,500 remaining in the globe. Human encroachment, illegal hunting, and pollution have all contributed to the decline in species numbers. Marine debris and the abundance of plastic on Hawaii's coastlines have destroyed their natural habitats, and they have developed a habit of consuming them, resulting in health concerns. Entanglement in fishing nets has also resulted in an enormous decline in their numbers. 


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