Let’s roll up our sleeves and get down to business. Today is World Oceans Day. Our oceans are essential for all life. It’s our job to protect this natural resource. Unfortunately, plastic pollution in the ocean is destroying our marine life and the environment. It’s time that we all start cleaning plastic from the ocean.
Ocean Pollution Facts
- Most ocean pollution begins on land. When we think of ocean pollution we typically imagine people dumping trash into the sea deliberately, but that’s not the case. The biggest source of ocean pollution is runoff from land (such as leaky septic tanks or construction site debris).
- Plastic pollution in the ocean is increasing. According to a study publishing in the American Association for the Advancement of Science, tons of plastic is floating in our oceans. In fact, 8 to 12.7 million metric tons of plastic waste entered our oceans in 2010. The study estimates that the “cumulative quantity of plastic waste available to enter the ocean from land is predicted to increase by an order of magnitude by 2025.”
- Ocean pollution goes beyond plastic water bottles and milk jugs. What are the most common forms of pollution? According to experts: cigarette butts, fishing gear, and food containers top the list, as well as plastic bags, and beverage bottles and cups.
3 Tips to Help Save Our Oceans
Reduce Your Plastic Waste
The key to ocean cleanup is reducing plastic consumption. Plastic is everywhere. We use it for everything. Cutting plastic out of our lives can be a challenge but it is possible. Giving up plastic water bottles for reusable ones is a start, but that’s not all you can do. Forgoing plastic bags for reusable ones and avoiding products with microbeads and glitter can also help save our oceans. Find more information here.
Cleaning plastic from the ocean is a collective effort. We all need to get involved. In honor of World Oceans Day, consider joining a local action committee or donating to an environmental group. You may also want to attend a special event in honor of World Oceans Day. Coordinated by The Ocean Project, there are tons of World Oceans Day events being held across the globe. Check the online listing to find events in your area.
Keep Up-to-Date on Innovative Ideas
There’s so much pollution in our oceans. If we want to clean them, we need to support people who think outside of the box. Let’s stay abreast of the latest environment cleanup efforts. One fascinating project to keep an eye out for is The Ocean Cleanup. It was founded by Boyan Slat, a Dutch 18-year-old who wants to rid the oceans of plastic. He plans to do this with garbage collecting booms. You can find out more here.