Browsing Tag

Water Pollution

Oceans

The History of Ocean Pollution and Where It’s Headed

June 22, 2020
ocean pollution

Our oceans amass more than 70% of the Earth’s surface – and for years, they’ve served as landfills. Before experts started to analyze these practices, many people believed these waterways could hold an unlimited amount of waste. Unfortunately, extensive research shows that’s not the case whatsoever.

Within the past few decades, we’ve come to know that our previous actions have caused immense damage. Still, what’s next for ocean pollution? Take a look.

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Environment

Celebrating World Oceans Day: What Strides Have We Made in Ocean Protection in the Past Decade?

June 12, 2020
world oceans day

When you turn on the news, you’ll most likely find negative stories about tragedies happening around the world. Most often, you can hear about how climate change is affecting the planet. There are many ways the Earth is changing to adapt to human pollution, but don’t get lost in the bad news. People are finding new ways to break old habits, especially in the past decade.

Here are some of the strides made in ocean protection in the past 10 years. There are so many reasons to celebrate during the upcoming World Oceans Day, so find something that encourages you to keep making sustainable choices.

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Oceans

10 Beach Cleanup Facts of 2020

June 10, 2020
beach cleanup facts

Most people look forward to summer because they can head to the beach with their friends and family. It’s a beautiful place to relax and enjoy splashing around in the waves, but only if it’s a trash-free environment. 

Beaches see some of the highest amounts of pollution because it’s easy for tourists to dump waste. It’s also where waterways bring their floating debris. Anyone who wants to do their part to make the earth a better place to live may start with changes in their personal life. However, don’t forget that you can always head to the beach and make an immediate difference.

Check out these 10 beach cleanup facts of 2020 that will encourage you on your sustainability journey. 

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Oceans

5 Types of Ocean Pollution and How We Can Stop Them

June 5, 2020
types of ocean pollution

Around the world, pollution affects many of our waterways. However, several different kinds of contamination exist – and each one hurts our oceans significantly. To put a stop to these harmful factors, we need to learn more. Then, we can understand how it influences the lives of people and animals and permanently changes our environment.

Take a look at five types of ocean pollution. 

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Environment

Avoid Oxybenzone Sunscreen If You Want to Prevent Reef Damage

June 3, 2020
oxybenzone reef damage

If there’s one thing dermatologists, scientists and parents can all agree on, it’s that wearing sunscreen is important. Whether it be spray-on sunblock or UV blocking lotion, the product helps protect everyone from the damaging effects of excessive sun exposure. While this is true, not all sunscreens are made equal. In fact, some can be downright harmful — namely, ones that contain oxybenzone.  

Scientists recently discovered this chemical is damaging coral reefs and marine life, especially in areas where humans frequent. Thus, a product that people once thought to be solely beneficial is actually damaging one of the most fragile ecosystems in the world. 

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Oceans

What Does Ocean Habitat Destruction Mean for Our Planet?

March 27, 2020
ocean habitat destruction

Human activities have been affecting our oceans and the life within them for centuries. But, only recently has the world begun to notice these detrimental effects. From low oxygen levels to ocean oil slicks, entire marine ecosystems are rapidly taking a turn for the worse. In many areas, our actions have even created unlivable ocean conditions, endangering marine life and, therein affecting our own economy and food supply. If we hope to recover from these effects, we must work together to restore the marine ecosystems we’ve so carelessly destroyed. 

Polluted Seas

As humanity’s dependency on plastic continues to grow, so will its effect on ocean habitats. The Great Pacific Garbage Patch, for instance, stretches 1.6 million square kilometers and largely consists of plastic objects and small microplastics. Marine animals mistake this floating debris for food, but these plastics are indigestible, filling their stomachs until they starve. Thes plastic particles also spread hazardous chemicals that can climb up the food chain and destroy entire ecosystems. Currently, ocean debris directly affects more than 800 marine species.

Humanity’s demand for oil has also resulted in a more polluted ocean. Oil spills contribute about 12% of all ocean oil, while shipping, drains, dumping and drilling produce the other 88%. New methods of hunting for oil also have a significant impact on marine life. Seismic blasts used to detect new drill sites have decreased the number of zooplankton, which are an essential food and oxygen source for many species like fish and whales. Therefore, increased drilling operations have the potential to affect every level of the aquatic food chain.

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Environment

What Is Agricultural Runoff, and How Is It Harming Our Waters?

March 18, 2020
what is agricultural runoff

Water is a resource that gets a lot of coverage, probably because living things need it to survive. You may not think much about your water sources, especially if getting hydrated is as easy as turning on the tap and filling up a cup. But clean, easily accessible water is by no means available to everyone, and a problem called agricultural runoff exacerbates matters.

What Is Agricultural Runoff?

Runoff happens when the water from rain, melted snow or irrigation doesn’t sink into the soil for proper absorption. Instead, it moves over the ground, picking up natural and artificial pollutants along the way. Eventually, those contaminants get deposited into coastal waterways, lakes, rivers and even underground sources of drinking water.

What is agricultural runoff, then? It’s the kind of water pollution described above, but it’s originated on farms. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) says this runoff is the leading source of impairments to surveyed rivers and lakes. Complicating matters is the fact that there’s no single source of this kind of runoff — farmers can’t just make one change to solve the problem.

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Oceans

The State of the World Water Crisis in 2020

March 11, 2020
water crisis 2020

As the global population grows and climate change makes rain unpredictable, we’ve started to run out of drinkable freshwater. 

Researchers have become increasingly confident that available freshwater will decrease over the coming years — some are even estimating that there could be a worldwide water shortage as soon as 2040.

Here’s the state of the world water crisis in 2020 — and what we may be able to do to beat global water scarcity.

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Environment, Oceans

10 Water Conservation Techniques in Agriculture

January 22, 2020
water conservation techniques in agriculture

Water is essential for life, but it is also an integral part of modern agriculture. We often plant in areas that don’t receive enough annual rainfall to support the crops we need to grow to feed the country and the world. This is where irrigation techniques come in — but as with most things, they’re not all created equal. As the population grows and water becomes an even more valuable resource, conservation techniques will become a requirement in the agriculture industry. Here are 10 water conservation techniques you can use today, whether you’re seeding a farm or just growing a garden in your backyard. 

1. Drip Irrigation

Drip irrigation isn’t a new concept, but as water conservation continues to grow in importance, it will likely gain popularity. Instead of irrigating the entire plant from above, drip irrigation uses pipes to drip water slowly onto the roots of the plants. This conserves between 20-50% of the water you would otherwise use in irrigation while reducing other negatives like runoff, surface evaporation and the potential for overwatering.

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Oceans

Sustainable Irrigation Systems to Reduce Agricultural Water Waste

January 8, 2020
sustainable irrigation

Agriculture, especially on large factory farms, is massively water-intensive —  according to the USDA, agriculture accounts for around 80% of all H2O use in the United States. As a result, many farmers are looking for ways to reduce waste and improve their farms’ sustainability.

Traditional irrigation systems can be wasteful in many different ways. However, they don’t have to be. With the right design, they can use as little water as possible while still providing enough to plants without reducing yields.

Here’s how farmers can reduce agricultural water waste with the right irrigation system design.

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