Our ocean, the heart of the planet, the magnificent body of water that covers more than two-thirds of the Earth’s surface, and the reason for many essential benefits for humans. It is why people are able to live. The seaplants, water, and animals all play a role in the importance of the ocean. They produce oxygen for humans to breathe, regulate the Earth’s Climate, and are an important food source that many people love (CondorFerries). This is just a small number of reasons why we need our Ocean to live, but with the increasing measure of plastic pollution, our ocean ecosystems are able to dismantle from the bottom up.
Each year, it is estimated that eight million tons of plastic end up in the oceans. More than a million seabirds and a hundred thousand marine animals die from this plastic every year (CondorFerries). Now this does not begin to tell the effects of what plastic does. To put it all into perspective, if we keep putting plastic in our oceans, there could possibly be more plastic than fish by 2050. What many people do not know is that most of our ecosystems are invisible to us; there are many tiny creatures and if they die, they affect everything up the food chain (Parker). Even up to the orcas, one of Earth’s biggest animals. It is a significant growing global pollution epidemic that starts with us.
Creating awareness and educating people is the first step to ease the impacts of plastic waste. People must know the importance of our Ocean and why we need it to survive. One of the biggest plastic users is the package industry; we must try to limit single-use plastics (Z, K.). Another everyday step humans can take is to be conscious of recycling and realize how it works. Lastly, you can donate to organizations that are focused on the wellbeing of our environment and join various initiatives that help to clean our oceans (Shayle).
Ocean plastic pollution is a prominent problem that will not go away anytime soon. It’s crazy to think about, but it starts with us and must end with us. Our oceans are the main reason why we are able to breathe and provide millions with their main source of protein. It not only harms our ocean’s ecosystems, but will ultimately affect us also. Right now the best thing we can do is realize our impact, and do what we can. It will feel like our actions do not make a difference, but they in fact do.
CondorFerries. 100+ Plastic in the Ocean Statistics & Facts (2020).www.condorferries.co.uk/plastic-in-the-ocean-statistics.
Parker, Laura. Plastic Pollution Is a Huge Problem-and It’s Not Too Late to Fix It. 10Feb. 2021, www.nationalgeographic.com/science/article/plastic-pollution-huge-problem-not-too-late-to-fix-it.
Shayle. “Top 3 Global Issues What Can You Do to Make a Difference.” Evolve Abroad, 9 Mar. 2020, evolveabroad.com/top-3-critical-global-issues-what-are -they-and-what-can-you-do-to-make-a-difference/.
Z, Karina. Why Should You Care about Ocean Plastic Pollution?15 Apr. 2020,medium.com/age-of-awareness/why-should-you-care-about-ocean-plastic-pollution-f4987467168c.