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Oceans

Oceans

10 Overfishing Solutions That Could Save Our Oceans

October 4, 2019
overfishing solutions

Overfishing has become a global crisis. One-third of fisheries around the world are operating at unsustainable levels. Over time, this unsustainable fishing will both decrease the amount of wild fish available to fishers and have huge consequences for the environment. If left unchecked, overfishing can lead to disruption of the food chain, harmful algal blooms and even critical dispensation: fish populations so reduced in size they can no longer sustain themselves.

But overfishing isn’t inevitable. Regulations that prevent overfishing and encourage sustainable fishing have been proven to help restore fish populations and heal marine ecosystems. And sustainable fishing may even be good for fishers’ profits, too.

Here are 10 solutions that could save our oceans from overfishing and help prevent ecological collapse.

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Oceans

The Most Endangered Marine Animals: Is It Too Late to Save Them?

September 23, 2019
endangered marine animals

During the past century, the extinction of animal species continued to exceed natural rates. There’s no doubt humankind drives the phenomenon. Climate change and the relentless pursuit of nonrenewable resources decimates habitats. Housing developments encroach upon the homes of native species.

The ocean is not safe from the devastation man wreaks. If current consumption continues unchecked, many scientists believe there will be more plastic than fish in the seas by 2050. What’s even more troubling is the species we may lose — and once they’re gone, they’re gone forever. Is it too late to save the most endangered marine animals?

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Oceans

How Does Contaminated Flood Water Affects Our Health?

August 26, 2019
contaminated flood water

A flood is a natural occurrence where water covers once-dry land. It can have a positive impact on an ecosystem, especially one experiencing prolonged drought. Unfortunately for most, it can also have a deadly effect.

Flooding typically happens after heavy rainfall when waterways – like rivers, creeks and ponds – can’t hold the new water. In coastal cities, tropical cyclones, tsunamis and high tide combined with high river levels cause floods.

Natural disasters are worsening with global warming. As temperatures rise, so does the risk of tropical cyclones and intense storms. Experts say a warmer climate could produce fewer storms – but they will be much more destructive.

If you get caught in a flood situation, you can reduce health risks by avoiding the water.

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Oceans

The Causes and Effects of Oceanic Natural Disasters on Our Environment

August 23, 2019
oceanic natural disasters

Natural disasters wreak havoc on the people affected by them. When it comes to oceanic natural disasters, such as tsunamis, there are also substantial implications on the environment. We’ll explore some of them here. Tsunamis are long, high waves typically caused by underwater earthquakes occurring at tectonic plate boundaries. Most happen in areas that have above-average tectonic plate activity.

But, volcanic eruptions and undersea landslides can also trigger tsunamis, as could a meteorite hitting the ocean. Tsunamis reach top speeds of 500 miles per hour. That’s why it’s crucial to use early-warning systems that give people the information they need to seek shelter on higher ground before the disasters hit.

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Oceans

Insidious Indifference: Our Role in Marine Pollution and the Impact of Animals Eating Plastic Particles

July 15, 2019
animals eating plastic

As humanity’s dependence on plastic has continued to swell, so too has its ecological footprint on ocean pollution. Disposing of waste without weighing the consequences has resulted in problematic repercussions for animals eating plastic particles without realizing how it may harm them. Humanity needs to take note of our culpability in widespread marine devastation and pursue a more sustainable approach.

 

The Threat of Pollution and Animals Eating Plastic Particles

When we reflect on marine pollution, most of us probably envision hapless animals tangled in plastic bags or six-pack rings. While this image accurately speaks to a subset of our pollution woes, the unfortunate reality is that it’s a far more significant problem than we likely perceive.

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Oceans

Threats to the Ocean From Poor Water Management

June 27, 2019
threats to the ocean

When you see a puddle on the street, or a flowerpot full of rain, it’s natural to think this water is separate from the ocean. After all, it’s miles from the coastline. The way we treat water that far inland shouldn’t have an effect on a marine ecosystem such a distance away — but it does.

In truth, all of the earth’s water is connected. The water cycle is a series of linked processes turning in an endless loop, from evaporation to precipitation and runoff. A seemingly harmless action may have consequences elsewhere, and large-scale mismanagement of water can result in serious threats to the ocean.

To visualize the idea, consider the path of a stream. The stream will eventually lead into a river, and the river will eventually lead into the sea. If someone pollutes the stream, it has far-reaching implications beyond the stream itself, causing issues as the contaminants travel toward their inevitable destination.

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Oceans

Repealing Clean Water Act Could Devastate Our Waters

June 13, 2019
clean water act

During 2017, Donald Trump signed an executive order allowing former Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Secretary Scott Pruitt to begin the process of replacing the Clean Water Act. Stating the move stemmed from a desire to protect the interests of industry, the president once again demonstrates he has little understanding of the reality of environmental devastation and what unfettered pollution will do to the human population, including to business leaders and their brain children. Even though Pruitt recently stepped down as head of the EPA, his replacement Andrew Wheeler, a former coal lobbyist, promises to be every bit as hostile to the planet.

The waterways of the world are interconnected through series of smaller streams, seasonal wetlands and underground aquifers where humans draw their drinking water. In 2015, former President Obama clarified a rule stating prior to any development destroying a natural water source, the developer must receive a special permit from the EPA. The revocation of this requirement will not only affect smaller streams — it will affect the entirety of the precious resource American citizens rely upon for their very survival.

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Oceans

Water Shows Us More Diversity in the Galápagos Species Than We Initially Thought

June 3, 2019
galapagos species

Scientists already know that the Galápagos Islands are home to an impressive amount of biodiversity. However, a new study shows they’re even more biodiverse than expected due to the number of non-native species migrating to the area. Scientists are concerned because they don’t yet know how these so-called alien species will impact the ones native to the Galápagos Islands.

The Galapágos Islands famously aided much of Charles Darwin’s research, and scientists are still looking into why the species diversity occurred. Recent conclusions indicate that although researchers thought only five non-native marine invertebrate species were living there, there are at least 53.

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Oceans

“Artifishal:” the New Documentary Exposing the World of Farmed Fish

May 20, 2019
Artifishal

A new documentary film by outdoor clothing and gear company Patagonia premiered at the Tribeca Film Festival on April 25. The film is titled “Artifishal” and takes a look at the practice of farming fish and the unsustainability of the practice. The documentary looks at fish hatcheries, farms and the environment surrounding fish found in the wild. The focus of the film is on Icelandic salmon.

Patagonia partnered with the North Atlantic Salmon Fund (NASF) and started an Against the Current campaign to stop open-net pens in Iceland from growing in number. The filmmakers encourage viewers to sign a petition to ban open-net salmon farms in Iceland, Norway, Scotland and Ireland, and thus far has over 10,000 signatures.

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Oceans

Reclaimed Water May Be One of the Biggest Focuses of Wastewater in 2019

May 2, 2019
reclaimed water

As the global population grows and droughts hit many areas of the world, governments, businesses and individuals are looking for ways to ensure access to water. Reclaimed water is a major focus of these efforts and will likely get even more attention in 2019.

Reclaimed or recycled water is used more than once before being released back into the environment. It could refer to wastewater, stormwater, runoff and water from other sources. Depending on where it comes from and its intended use, the water may undergo treatment before reuse.

You can use reclaimed water for nearly any purpose as long as it’s treated adequately. You can use it to water farms, lawns and golf courses. Companies can apply it in their manufacturing processes. It can be used to fill lakes and fight fires. It can even be used as drinking water, although that requires more intensive treatment.

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