Why is the future of oceans important to humans?
If the oceans die, then so will humans.
Oceans are our life support; they supply most of our oxygen and supply a major source of protein. They regulate our climate and help support the human population.
If you think one person can’t help with the current ocean problems, you’re wrong. One person changing their habits and speaking out can make an impact, and help other people follow suit.
Listed below are 9 simple steps that you can take to save the ocean and make a big difference in our environment.
Simple Steps for You to Save the Ocean
1. Don’t Buy Anything with Microbeads
Microbeads are the tiny pieces of plastic that are added to products for scrubbing and exfoliation, such as body wash or toothpaste.
Why are they a problem?
Microbeads are too small for water filtration and processing plants to clean them out of the water, so these beads add up in our water systems and end up in the ocean.
Once in the ocean, marine life mistakes the toxic beads for food and eat them.
In July, a law will go into effect that prohibits the manufacturing of cosmetic products that contain microbeads. In 2018, it will be illegal to sell such products.
2. Eat Sustainable Fish
The human impact from consumption, destruction of habitat, and unsustainable fishing practices are greatly depleting the global fish populations.
Sustainable fisheries focus on the more plentiful species because they can reproduce faster to sustain their population. They also follow environmental protocol to help minimize impacts on the oceanic ecosystem.
So the next time you’re eating out or shopping, choose sustainable fish to reduce the demand for overexploited species and help save the marine life.
3. Reduce Your Carbon & Energy Consumption
Oceans currently absorb around a third of human-induced carbon emissions, which translates to 22 million tons a day.
As oceans absorb more carbon, their capacity as a carbon storehouse could decrease. Meaning, the carbon we create will remain in the atmosphere and influence climate change.
This ocean damage will not only affect the livelihood of certain marine life but also human life.
Make reductions where you can to help save the oceans. Some suggestions include:
- Taking the Stairs
- Switching to Energy-Saving Light Bulbs
- Decreasing the Thermostat
4. Help Clean Beaches
Ocean trash is a serious pollution problem that is harming the oceans and marine life. It is certainly an eyesore, but it also harms humans by that can injuring those who go to the beach or getting stuck in boat propellers.
We must do what we can to prevent trashed beaches and debris-filled water.
Always clean up after yourself at the beach. Never interfere with marine wildlife or remove rocks and coral. If there’s a local beach cleanup near you, consider taking the time to volunteer.
By making these smaller cleaning actions, you will make a difference in the future of our oceans.
5. Reduce, Reuse, Recycle
There are millions of tons of plastic debris floating around in the oceans.
Plastic is nonbiodegradable and rarely degrades, so it lasts longer than any other trash. It gets swept up from the land to water systems during heavy storms or falls into sewer systems, and ends up in the oceans.
Plastic threatens the existence of marine animals as they get tangled up in the trash or ingest it for food.
Reduce your consumption of plastic products, and always reuse and recycle when you can, to help save oceans. Not to mention, you’ll end up saving money when you buy in bulk and focus on reusing.
As everyone knows, smoking cigarettes is harmful to your health and to others around you. It is, however, also detrimental to the ocean environment.
Cigarette filters are also made of plastic, so they aren’t biodegradable. In fact, 1.69 billion pounds of these butts wind up as global litter each year.
Cigarette butts end up on beaches, water systems, and the oceans. When they get wet, the poisonous chemicals destroy the surrounding water. Birds, fish and other marine life will also eat them.
If you’re a smoker, always properly dispose of your cigarette butts when you’re done with them. If you needed another reason to quit smoking, remember the ocean ecosystems within the environment.
When going out on the open ocean, always be responsible.
Never throw anything overboard, be aware of nearby marine life, and find the most eco-friendly options.
If you own your own boat, know if it has anti-fouling paint on the bottom of it. The paint is toxic to prevent marine life from sticking to it.
Most boats rely on this copper-based paint, but copper levels in our oceans are much higher than is acceptable. Copper is a biocide, so it will harm marine life.
Do yourself and the environment a favor, and find a paint that’s non-toxic instead.
8. Learn and Advocate
All life is tied to the oceans. As you learn more about environmental issues affecting the oceans, the more you will want to help ensure oceanic health.
One World One Ocean is an advocacy group that produces films to teach you about environmental issues while raising awareness for our oceans. By watching a movie, you can boost your brain power and gain environmental knowledge.
Introduce others to these films, and you’ll help educate and inspire for ocean changes.
By speaking out, you can make a difference for the future of the environment.
9. Donate to Charity
One last step in our list of simple steps to save the ocean is to support the organizations that are working to protect the oceans. Find a national organization to give financial support, or even find ways to volunteer.
If you’re looking for some charitable suggestions, consider:
- Ocean Conservancy
- Clean Ocean Action
- Coral Reef Alliance
- Clean Water Fund
- Bermuda Institute of Ocean Sciences: BIOS
- National Fish and Wildlife Foundation
- The Ocean Foundation
As you can see, simple steps can really go a long way. It’s easy to help the environment and ocean problems at hand, all by yourself. Don’t forget to teach others what you have learned, to spread knowledge and awareness amongst the global population.
By following the simple steps listed above, you will help save the ocean.
If you’re interested in learning more life hacks, continue to check out our blog!