The Biggest Threats to the Ocean
Gone are the days of living the slow life, but that doesn't mean it's too late to reverse our bad habits.
So Stressed Out
The ocean is under a great deal of stress at the moment and that mainly comes down to the actions of us, the human race. We seem to be on a mission to live in such a fast-paced throwaway world. We are constantly wanting the next product or the newest item, but yet we are obsessed with the idea of living in a clean minimalist style world.
Things aren't kept for a long period of time anymore. We are always on the move, we hardly even have time to sit down and drink a coffee anymore. Everything has to be takeaway and on the go. It's kind of sad if you think about it...
What happened to the days where we would read a book for an hour or more each day. Or enjoy an actual cup of tea without checking our phones every few minutes? Gone are the days of living the slow life, but that doesn't mean it's too late to reverse our bad habits.
We need to focus on reusing, recycling and reducing rather than replacing.
On the Eco Train
It's great that we are becoming more aware of our impact on the planet. However, unfortunately, getting your hands on a keep cup really isn't going to make that much of a difference. I'm not saying it isn't important to keep trying and educating yourselves. What I'm trying to get at here is the fact that one small change isn't going to make that much of an impact. We need to change the whole way we live. Let's live the slow life, and on reusing, recycling and reducing rather than replacing.
At the moment we are learning more, but in turn, wanting to find replacements. Replacements are not the answer, the answer is to use what we already have. We have enough people for 4 planets living on 1 planet (this blows my mind!). Therefore we are saturating all of our supplies. We need to learn to use what we have so we don't cause more issues by creating or mass producing other systems.
"Life is all about balance" may just be the most truthful saying
Commercial fishing nets often get lost or left by the fishermen. These nets are nearly invisible in dim light and easily get stuck on coral reefs, disturbing the underwater world. They are one of the worst silent killers in the ocean. Due to the fact that they can travel huge distances killing millions of marine animals along the way. They are spreading diseases and destroying eco-systems in their wake. It also has negative effects on the fishermen's lively hood as they often damage boats and also kill out important species with economic value.
Ghost fishing is something that is easy to ignore when it's out of sight out of mind. That is until it starts affecting the fishermen. Only then will it be enough to wake them up and make them realise that something needs to change.
What can be done?
We are currently in the process of learning more about the ways in which we can up-cycle and reuse products that we are disregarding after a single use. Many fashion companies are starting to incorporate old fishing nets into new products, through using materials such as TENCEL. There are also many art projects popping up around the world which bring light to the issues our ocean is facing. Many of which include using discarded ghost nets. There have even been puppet shows made out of ghost nets and marine debris, which is aimed at sharing knowledge with young children.
The goal is to make sure we are re-using more. This will ensure that in the long run less is being made so we can work on using what we have already made. Americans used about 50billion plastic bottles last year. One pair of leggings will use three plastic bottles and a sports bra one plastic bottle. There is no chance in a million years that we would run out of recycled plastic to up-cycle, not at the rate we are producing it. So let's keep at it because every little helps!
Microplastics are tiny pieces of plastic such as microbeads found in beauty products, synthetic fibres from clothes and broken-down plastic waste. They can be super harmful when they end up in our waterways and the ocean. They are consumed by marine life including, fish, sea animals, and even birds. It is something that not many people think about, but microplastics have been found in 98% off fish and seabirds tested. We have to remember that we then eat these sea animals. Meaning the plastic is transferred from them to us, and it has been found that these microbeads of plastic can then transfer into our bloodstreams.
It is not yet known the cause of plastic in our body, but it's surely not going to be a good one. Many of the diseases we have as humans these days are new diseases, including cancer. These chemicals in the plastics are potential health risks.
What can be done?
Microfibres as easily released every time we wash our clothes. Which is why it is super important to soak and rinse your clothes in a bucket of water before emptying the old water into your garden. This way any loose microfibres will be kept local in your garden rather than being washed away down the drains and into the waterways.
The largest threat to the ocean is that of mass fishing. We are consuming fish at a pace faster then it can breed.
Most people literally can't stand the thought of eating many sea animals including sharks, turtles, seahorses, dolphins, whales and seals. What they don't think about though is how many of these get caught up in the equipment designed to catch other species. These animals are a by-product of the fishing industry. So although our aim isn't to consume them, we are harming them anyway. This is a big factor in causing death upon endangered species.
Due to such a high demand for seafood consumption, it is estimated that we have wiped out around 80% of the worlds fish stocks. If this continues, there is a high chance that the system will completely collapse by 2050.
What can be done?
One of the best ways of reversing this is by slowing down our seafood consumption. We do not need seafood and meat at every single meal. Life is all about balance as is our diet. We require a mixture of different foods including fat, protein and carbohydrates to live. Try cutting down by giving meatless Mondays and Fishless Thursdays ago.
Eat my Insta for yummy animal-free meal ideas
REPURPOSE, RECYCLE, REUSE, REDUCE do not REPLACE with another issue!
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