Today is Oceans Day and we didn’t want to miss the opportunity to pay tribute to them. They are super important for our planet and, unfortunately, they are in serious danger. Did you know that every year 8 million tons of plastic are dumped into the sea?
But how does plastic get into the sea? The main reasons are:
- Precipitation or wind can blow plastic waste into the sea, even when we throw it in the rubbish and it is deposited in landfills.
- Rainfall can wash the waste into rivers, waterways or sewers and eventually into the sea.
- Derived from the landfills themselves due to the water flowing from the landfills.
- From activities such as fishing, recreational boating and shipping.
- From sewage treatment plants and wastewater treatment plants.
Very sad news. With this data, it is very clear that we must all work together to protect the oceans. Perhaps you didn’t know that…
- The oceans regulate the climate.
- They produce oxygen, they are the lungs of our planet, generating most of the oxygen we breathe.
- They absorb large amounts of CO2 and other gases.
- They feed millions of people.
- They provide us with resources, food, medicines?
- It is a source of renewable and non-renewable energy.
- It contains 97% of the planet’s water.
- It is the most life-supporting environment on the planet.
- They regulate the global balance of the earth’s climate: absorbing heat and redistributing it around the world through interaction with the atmosphere and through currents.
What can we do to prevent their pollution? Doing our bit is easy – it’s just a matter of attitude! Here are some actions to help avoid polluting the sea:
- Reduce plastic as much as you can: Avoid single-use containers and use reusable products.
- Reduce your consumption: Remember to put into practice the three R’s of the circular economy. Reduce, reuse and recycle, in that order of importance. Consume less, give your products a second life and separate your waste properly.
- Mind the drain: In 2017, 4,500 wet wipes appeared in a 154 square metre portion of the River Thames in London.
- Eat locally and locally sourced: Consuming fresh, seasonal produce and supporting organic, ecological and local farming helps to conserve local resources, reduce CO2 emissions and avoid food waste.
“Plasticus maritimus, an invasive species”, a fascinating book
We recommend “Plasticus maritimus, an invasive species” by Ana Pègo and Isabel Minhós Martins. A book created to learn more about the problem of plastic in the oceans and to learn how to act in the best way to minimise it.
A brilliant book that informs us about the problems of plastic in the oceans; and not only does it limit itself to compiling data, but it also offers us a new way of understanding the problem and provides us with a way to contribute to eliminating this polluting invader of the seas.
The author, Ana Pego, is a Portuguese biologist who was born by the sea. Every day, when she got home from school, what she did was to visit the sea, it was her playground; she went there either to swim or to observe the environment, and so, little by little, she began to collect plastics, made contact with other people with similar interests, broadened her knowledge and created a very curious collection of the objects thrown into the sea.