Even though water cover over 71% of the earth’s surface, the water bodies are subjected to heavy pollution, threatening the sustainability of the planet. Environmentalist and scientist have raised alarm over the rapid destruction of marine life and the ecosystem. Harmful substances, such as chemicals, plastic, oil, and industrial waste, are finding their way into the oceans, causing irreversible damage (Bergmann, Gutow,& Klages, 2015). However, despite the urgency of the situation, some governments and companies are still reluctant to take decisive actions and mitigate the damage that has been done due to marine pollution. Even though marine pollution has been identified as one of the biggest threats to the sustainability and future of the planet, it is important for the society to understand the causes and effects of this form of pollution for them to take decisive and proactive steps to stop and reverse this threat.
One of the biggest contributors to marine pollution is sewage. Draining raw and untreated sewage has had a detrimental impact on the ecosystem. The introduction of foreign chemicals reduces the amount of oxygen in the vast water bodies, consequently killing marine life (Bergmann et al., 2015). In addition, industries also release agricultural and chemical waste without taking the necessary steps to protect the environment. Toxic liquids poison marine life, while some chemicals raise the temperature of water bodies, causing a phenomenon known as thermal pollution.
Oil spills have also contributed significantly to marine pollution based on the fact that crude oil is difficult to clean. The demand for oil has pushed companies to prospect the ocean floor for oil deposits. As a result, several major disasters from offshore oil wells and pipelines have contributed to marine pollution. In addition, the transportation of oil by ships has also resulted in several major oil spills, which have had a lasting impact on marine life. Other than oil, miners also prospect for other mineral deposits in the deep sea. Deep-sea mining has caused permanent damage to some sections of the ocean, further undermining the recovery and sustainability of the ecosystem.
Littering and the irresponsible disposal of plastic wastes is a huge source of marine pollution. Even though plastics are popularly used globally, its inability to be biodegradable has been detrimental for the environment. They are easily carried by rainwater, streams, rivers, and other drainage channels to the oceans. The plastic reduces the amount of oxygen in water bodies, strangles animals, and destroys their ecosystems (Bergmann et al., 2015). The damage done by plastic waste has become obvious for governments and other stakeholders, and efforts are made to reduce the amount of plastic in use.
It is apparent that substances and minerals flow from the mining camps into the ocean from sewage. More importantly, they release biochemical nutrients to the ocean’s ecology, hence decreasing the oxygen level, the quality of water, and plant life.Agricultural and industrial wastes directly influence marine life since they are hazardous. In addition, it may also rise temperature in the ocean, leading to thermal pollution. In such cases, plants and animals cannot exist in an environment with high temperatures.
Another effect of ocean pollution is large oil spills resulting in disruption of marine life. Over the past few years, there have been accidents on ships ferrying crude oil. Since it is usually difficult to clean after the spillage of oil, the liquid usually covers micro-organisms. Additionally, such oil spills result in changing the life of micro-organisms. Therefore, plants and animals face difficulties to survive in such conditions.
Ocean mining has resulted in ocean pollution, hence affecting the reproductive system of marine life. It is apparent that drilling for cobalt, copper, zinc, oil, gold, and silver leads to sulfide deposits on the ocean floor (Brennan, 2014). According to Brennan (2014), deep-sea mining has also affected the low levels of the ocean. The aforementioned approach increases the toxicity of the region. Moreover, it causes oil spills, leaking, and corrosion, which hinders development of life in the ecosystem.
Littering occurs when objects are blown into the ocean over a long period. Most of the debris, such as sand, dust, and man-made objects (debris and trash), are thrown into the ocean. Since some of the litter, for instance plastic, does not decompose, its presence results in polluting the ocean. Besides, the fish caught from the ocean may have plastic in their stomach. Moreover, ocean fauna, such as dolphins, crocodiles, fish, sea birds, and sharks, may become caught by plastic. The rise in carbon dioxide in the atmosphere can lead to acid rains. On the other hand, this satiation raises the temperature of ocean water.
Since many people depend on the ocean’s ecosystem, it is prudent that humans should take care of its welfare. Ocean pollution has led to the death of micro-organisms on a large scale. As a result, there should be stiff penalties that will ensure that people do not pollute the ocean. Therefore, it is wise for people to conserve the ocean since there is a symbiotic relationship between marine life and humans.
We compose high quality custom essays from as low as $8/pg.
To get plagiarism-free essays, order at www.cheapcustomwriting.com