01 Jun Easy Ways to Protect Our Oceans
Oceans are a great benefit to life on earth. They act as a habitat and a critical ecosystem, provide food, resource energy, and facilitate commerce, exploration and leisure activities like sport. With oceans being such a valuable resource to a plethora of species and a vital economic component, it’s a shock that so many people abuse and pollute it. Some of the abuse is done intentionally, like littering at the beach or illegally dumping in waterways. Other pollutants find their way to the ocean and the contributors are never the wiser, a complete accident. In honor of World Oceans Day, June 8, 2018, we are sharing every day actions and objects that contribute to ocean pollution you probably didn’t know about, and how you can help.
Shed the Straw
You might have seen the “Shed the Straw” hashtag floating around your social media newsfeeds recently. Plastics are a huge contributor to water and land pollution. This movement strives to eliminate one of the most commonly used types of plastics, the straw. The straw is often only used once and is completely unessential. Straws frequently end up in the ocean and embed themselves into marine life. To fix this problem you could ditch the straw all together or opt for more environment friendly option, like FinalStraw.
Ditch the Body Glitter
When you think of body glitter you probably think of costumes or Halloween, but festival fashion has brought glitter back in a big way. Festivals, like Coachella or Electric Daisy Carnival (EDC), have rebirthed the glitter movement with some attendees painting their whole bodies in glitter. Although a very visually appealing form of expression, glitter can be harmful to our oceans. In fact, glitter is a micro plastic, which means it seeps through the barriers that protect our waterways and end up in the stomachs of marine life. By eliminating use of glitter in crafts, clothing, and beauty products, you’re taking an everyday action to preserve marine wildlife.
Buy Ocean Friendly
Scientists are now discovering the harmful effects products that were once deemed safe now have on our oceans. Sunscreen, which is meant to protect humans, is actually harming ocean life such as coral reefs. The chemicals in sunscreen play a significant role in coral bleaching. Choosing brands that make environmentally-friendly versions of products like sunscreen, surfboard wax, and boat paint help prevent harmful chemicals from poisoning our oceans.
If you don’t live by the ocean there are still many ways you can help prevent pollution. You can take some of the steps listed above to prevent pollution in local waterways that eventually lead to our oceans. You can also buy sustainable seafood, cleaning products, and dispose of your waste properly. If you know of any other not-so-common pollutants, please share them in the comments below so we can spread the knowledge.