Oceanic Plastic Pollution
70.9 percent of Earth’s surface is underwater: oceans. Home to a very diverse marine life, scope for employment and source of income for individuals and various countries, a medium of procuring food and coastal resources, an artist’s blue stroke inspiration, and song lyrics which appeal to the masses, and a lot more.
On the other hand, we have plastic, a synthetic polymer: cheap, durable, light, versatile… a well-known but still often ignored catastrophe in modern human history.
Contrasting in nature. Bound by the discretion of humans. Oceans have been under a threat that cannot be undermined, a threat over our heads which we are disregarding. Plastic’s durability is the major cause of them residing over ocean floors and surfaces, polluting and destroying habitats for more than two hundred thousand species.
International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) in its IUCH Issues Briefs which provides key information on selected issues central to complex issues related to nature conservation and sustainable development states, “At least 8 million tons of plastic end up in our oceans every year, and makeup 80% of all marine debris from surface waters to deep-sea sediments.”
Where is it Coming From?
You might live a thousand miles away from the coasts BUT plastic finds its way through:
Industry waste disposal into the water bodies mainly, rivers.
Tiny plastic fragments find their way through sewage.
Litter disposal for a wide range of purposes into river resources, including occasional overboard waste ship disposal.
Landfills and other inappropriate mass waste disposal might contaminate the groundwater via soil filtering/percolation.
Sailboat discarded fishing nets are also an established threat to marine life.
What Can Be Done?
The long molecular chains of polymers give rise to plastic’s durable and versatile nature which makes it an excellent craft material. For Instance, check out Project Aquacope’s Plastic Jellyfish.
If Beaches are the next thing on your bucket list or you occasionally go for a jog, add plogging into your to-dos.
Safe Disposals, rather simple but still over-looked upon the way. Ensure that plastics of any kind have a separate garbage bin to be disposed of. Make sure disposals are through MCD Services.
Say NO to cutlery, plastic straws, and sauce packets while ordering food.
ADOPT a Cloth Bag, rather than babysitting a plastic or a paper one every time.
Lets Not Hope, But Work Towards a Future, Where Oceans Are Filled with Marine Life, Rather than Plastics You & I Disposed A Wound Which We Possibly Cannot Suture