Ocean pollution is the act of contaminating marine life intentionally
Ocean pollution is the act of contaminating marine life intentionally. This is something that is clearly happening in all parts of the world and in one way or the other it seems uncontrollable. The reason why am saying it is intentional is that those doing it have a way of avoiding but they still continue doing it. This has resulted in the deaths of very many sea animals that could have otherwise survived if this was controlled. This contamination started sometimes back when most countries started gaining industrialization and since then, the pollution has continued since, and although there are measures and penalties that have been put in place to punish those doing it, it is still happening. The reason why there is a lot of waste dumped in the ocean is that each and every person is responsible for the dumping. Most people try to hide behind the fact that whatever leads to ocean pollution cannot be avoided. Following below are the various types of pollutions and they are reasons to prove that human beings are the ones responsible. A good example of a claim is where a certain country declares a certain particular region in the sea is controllable by them thus any dumping by any other country will make them liable for it. The reason for this is to make sure that each country has a certain area in the sea that it controls. Also to make sure that ocean pollution in particular countries is reduced to controllable levels. The paragraphs below outline types of pollution and ways to prevent or reduce them.
Ocean pollution takes different forms which when happening at the same time this comes up as a big problem for the sea animals. The one and most pollution form is industrial waste. Most industries usually locate themselves alongside rivers and other water bodies. The reason for this is because they well know that when they dump this waste in the water it will just flow in water and this is where animals are really suffering so much in oceans. Back in the day that is, the 1970s and the 1980s around 25 million tons of intoxicated materials were dumped in the ocean. The kinds of waste from these industries include scrap metals, flue desulphurization, alkaline waste, coal ash, sludge, acids, and waste from the processing of fish. These forms of pollutions literally kill the marine animals within a very short time since these acids are very concentrated (Maria, 12).
Sewage sludge is another form of waste that is being dumped in the oceans now and then. Treatment from sewages can be contaminated with things like metals, organic chemicals and oils and when dumped in the oceans it is a large killer of the sea animals. Oil for example is lighter than water meaning that it will form a top layer on water and these prevents oxygen from reaching the animals thus they end up dead since they lack it in their systems. In 1980’s and 1990’s there was around 30 million tons of this kind of waste that was dumped in the oceans. This kind of pollution as per the claim occurs in countries that have no ways of treating their sewage and they dump it in sea thus affecting the rules that stipulate no dumping in other nation’s sea.
Radioactive waste is another form of dumping in the ocean that comes from medical use of isotopes, processing of nuclear power, research of the use of isotopes and industrial uses. There is a very big difference between industrial waste and nuclear waste. This is that the nuclear waste remains radioactive for quite a very long time that can be even decades. Nuclear waste should be disposed carefully by the use of concrete drums at the bottom of the ocean. The reason why concrete drums are used is so as to void them from spreading when they hit the ocean’s floor. This kind of dumping has currently reached about 84,000 terabecquerels.
The highest point of this kind of dumping happened between 1954 and 1962 but surprisingly these constitutes to a very insignificant amount of the radioactive waste that has been dumped up to date that is around 1%. These concrete drums have various levels of concentration of the radioactive waste in them and these leads to diversity of the kind of danger that are imposed to humans and the marine life. Nuclear dumping is estimated to cause around 1000 deaths in a span of the next 10000 due to evaporation of the nuclear waste that is proper measures will not be put in place to prevent this kind of evaporation. Developed countries involve themselves in researches thus they produce a lot of radioactive waste which is dumped in the sea and not treated. The claim comes in where the waters affected move to other countries sea braking the rules.
Most of the ocean pollution starts on the land. This kind of pollution ranges from pesticides to plastic bags and both of all in one way or the other a way reach to the oceans. When large tracts are ploughed and these can be because of farming which is a good thing, different kinds of oils are exposed on the surface of this land and there is a risk of erosion when the rains come. This is because most of these rain flows goes to the oceans and they are carrying pesticides and agricultural fertilizers which are harmful chemicals to the marine life. This kind of pollution from the runoff from the land is called the non-point source of pollution and it contributes to about 80% of the ocean pollution (Loree, 06).
The non-point source of pollutions comes in different forms; these can be from boats, trucks, cars and septic tanks. Millions of motor vehicles which are on our roads currently drop small portions of oil on the roads and parking lots and when the rains come all these finds its way to the sea. Some of the ocean pollutants start as air pollutants which settle on into oceans and waterways. Silt from constructions sites or fields and top soil usually run off to waterways harming wildlife habitats and fish. This non-point pollution makes oceans and waterways unsafe for wildlife and humans and in some areas some of these pollutions can be so bad that beaches are closed after rainstorms. This is a kind of pollution that happens in all nations since farming and waste in coastal regions is all over thus they all dump the sea thus affecting the waters in general are affected and all of them hold themselves responsible.
More than the one third of the shellfish growing waters are greatly affected by Coastal pollution. The extra nutrient from the fertilizers in lawns and farms cause eutrophication which is algal blooms flourishing that reduces the levels of oxygen dissolved in water and these leads to suffocation of marine animals. Eutrophication is indeed a serious problem since it has caused vast dead zones in several parts of the World.
Spillage of oil that is from the boats and ship cruising on the oceans is one of the great damages to the marine animals. Actually around 12% of the oils entering the oceans every year is from the spillage. 36% of this kind of spillage is from down drains from the industries and cities. Chemicals can reach the sea when they are being manufactured, disposed and used. People sometimes back assumed that most of the pollutants would be dispersed and diluted to safe levels but that is not the case most of these chemicals stay in the sea and are great harm in the marine life. This is more of a non-point pollution that leads to most pollution of the waters spreading all over the ocean and the claim is thus violated.
Very tiny animals in the food chain such as plankton absorb these kinds of chemicals after they feed and the chemicals stay in their bodies and they later pass the effect to the large animals after they feed on them. The reason why these small animals carry the chemicals in their bodies is because they do not perform breakdown easily thus these chemicals accumulate in their bodies. Large animals which appear on the top levels of the food chain can at a particular point contain more chemicals in their bodies than even the water they live in. This can be even a million times higher. On the other hand the polar bears which feed on sea animals like the seals carry a billion times of these chemicals than the environment that they live in.
People are in turn affected by these chemicals either by eating these contaminated sea foods or animal fats. These can cause serious health problems like reduced fertility, behavioral problems, immune system damage and cancer. There is other pollution like foam and bags dumped in the ocean from the sea or the land are consumed by marine fish mammals and birds because they mistake them with food. This causes fatal effects in their health. Some fishermen discard their nets after fishing and they stay in the ocean for years thus ensnaring mammals and fish. The currents in the sea carry these discarded in oceans for very long distance for thus spreading the effects in very large regions of the sea. We may at times think that ocean pollution can only be physical but this is not always the case since there is even noise pollution as a form of water pollution. These sounds can be from sonar device, ships, oil rigs and some natural sources like the earthquake which in one way or the other disrupt the communication, migration, hunting and patterns of reproduction of the marine animals. This in particular affects the aquatic mammals like the dolphins and whales. The fact that people consume the sea animals gets diseases from this and this is due to the dumping done in the sea. The claim comes in where innocent people who depend on sea animals as food are getting sick due to the dumping in the sea that maybe is not done by them. (Loree, 19).
Dumping of toxic materials in the sea which is very intentional brings less effect to the sea animals than the atmospheric transportation, land based pollution and maritime pollution. Waste dumped into the sea can be categorized in three categories that is whitelist, gray list and black list. On the black list side are the mercury compounds, organ halogen compounds, cadmium compounds, pure cadmium and pure mercury any type of crude oil, refined petroleum and its residue, materials made for biological or chemical tests, oil products, plastics and highly radioactive waste.
The grey list is water that is contaminated with lead, zinc ,copper, organ silicon compounds, arsenic any type of pesticides, fluoride, cyanide, acids and basis, chromium, nickel and its compounds, beryllium, scrap metal, bulky waste, containers, lower level radioactive materials vanadium and any other material that has an effect of any kind when it is dumped into the ecosystem. The whitelist includes materials that are neither in the grey list nor the blacklist. The development of the whitelist had the aim of making sure that all the items on this list are very safe and cannot be dumped on areas such as coral reefs. There is a global ban to stop this kind of dumping. The use of plastic bags should be reduced so as to avoid the issue of dumping them everywhere. All this kind of lists relates directly relate to the claim since they are chemicals that are dumped into the sea by industrialized countries thus affecting clean waters of other nations. (Maria, 17).
Use of products that can be recycled is one of the best measures that can be put in place so as to avoid plastic bags. These should be adopted by all countries especially the developing ones since these is the time that they are experiencing industrial growth. Countries that have lots of industries should make sure that their waste is treated before it is decomposed so as to avoid it affecting the soil which in one way or the other can flow into the ocean when there is rainfall. These will also make sure that no litter is dumped into the sea thus reducing the deaths of the marine life.
Talen, Maria. Ocean Pollution. San Diego, CA: Lucent Books, 1991. Print.
Burns, Loree G. Tracking Trash: Flotsam, Jetsam, and the Science of Ocean Motion. Boston: Houghton Mifflin, 2007. Print.