Happy World Oceans Day!

I realise my last post was on Earth Day. Haven’t really had time to blog properly about field trips and stuff, in the midst of my exam week and all. But today is World Oceans Day, and I just thought I’d do a quick post.

Two thirds of our Earth is covered by the ocean. Back in Singapore, being an island completely surrounded by the sea, plus the fact that most of our GDP comes from shipping trading, marine issues were a common feature. Here in Cambridge though, being relatively far from the coast, I barely spend time thinking about marine issues, save the occasional article that appears on my newsfeed. Just makes me wonder how many people living in inland areas think about the impact they have on the oceans and the oceans have on them.

Oceans are awesome cos marine plankton provide 1/2 of our atmospheric oxygen. These plankton also suck carbon dioxide from the atmosphere, which is good when we’re pumping out ever more CO2 by burning fossil fuels. About 15% of the global population get their animal protein from fish, and I’m sure plenty more people enjoy their shellfish and various seafood.

What most people like. Image taken from: everhungrysoul.com

The diversity of life underwater is just incredible, as anyone who dives can attest to. And after all, life first evolved underwater.

The reefs at Napantao MPA

The reefs at Napantao MPA (where I volunteered last Aug)

Yet the oceans are increasingly under assault. We used to think that humans could never wrought a change in a body as huge as the endless ocean. But I guess that’s no longer true.

We’re overfishing the seas. Meaning you get (relatively) cheap, abundant seafood now, but that’s not gonna be forever. Not to mention the problems of by-catch.

All you see are a few fish in the supermarket/restaurant. But this is what really happens. Image taken from Wikipedia.

Climate change is causing ocean acidification. Which has an impact on the organisms living in the oceans, and will eventually impact us as well.

Ocean acidification is not cool. Image taken from http://www.upwell.us

Our trash is ending up in ocean gyres, and the all-wonderful and all-durable plastic ends up killing lots of wildlife.

Not just birds, but whales, turtles, fish and lots of other creatures end up feeding on plastic instead of proper food. Image taken from www. speakupforblue.com

It’s a crime, really, that we’re doing this to the oceans. So make a promise today to do something for the oceans. Because you are actually really just doing yourself, and the future generations, a favour.

Yeah, exactly. Image taken from theweek.com

Find out more:

World Oceans Day
Celebrate World Oceans Day: Together we have to power to protect the oceans
World Oceans Day website

Plastic in our oceans
Midway Journey film
Bag It movie 
Plasticized the movie
Our Oceans: A Plastic Soup
Threat of microplastics
Classify plastic as hazardous

End of the Line film
Sandgrains film
Problems of overfishing
Sustainable seafood
The black fish: working for the oceans –> I attended a talk by them last year, and henceforth decided to abstain from all seafood unless I know for sure how it’s been obtained.

And really, to deal with ocean acidification, you need to deal with climate change. Globally, I’m not sure if any solution can ever be reached, but individually, you can all do your part about it. Reducing carbon footprint, reducing consumption, etc.


About Jocelyne Sze

I'm a Nature-lover, aspiring conservationist, and wannabe traveller in search of outdoor adventure.
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