Around 8 million metric tons of plastic garbage ends up in the world’s oceans every year. By 2050, there is expected to be more plastics than fish in our oceans. Banning plastic is one major steps many countries are taking but perhaps it is not the right solution because it is difficult to change people’s habits, especially as long as they don’t have a more convenient option in hand.
The best way thus is to put in place a smart and efficient system to collect them at one place and use them scientifically in making roads etc. so that they don’t end up in the water bodies unchecked.
Animals living in the deep ocean are also exposed to climate warming and face increasing challenges. Significantly reducing carbon emissions is vital to control warming. We also need to act urgently to alleviate other human-generated threats to sea life, including seabed mining and deep-sea bottom fishing. Global warming is a pressing concern for most countries of the world today, yet due to our over dependence on conventional fuel and traditional waste disposal and farming practices, we have not been able to make much headway in any positive direction.
Lowering of carbon emission has been a daunting mission and yet we are far from achieving anything substantial. With lack of resources and policy paralysis in governments, the situation in many countries of the developing world, including India, is more worrisome even as huge population means more damage to environment.
Studies after studies have established the direct relation of deforestation to global warming, yet, we have brazenly ravaged wildlife and forests in the past three decades in the name of infrastructure and development.
A large part of the world has progressed in the same lopsided way and environment has always been low on the priority list. The most populated countries like India, China, Brazil, Pakistan, Nigeria etc. have ravaged their forest resources pretty much to the same degree, population pressure and lack of modern practices being some of the reasons for it.
It is only in very recent times that some initiatives are being taken but given the extent of the damage, we are still far from achieving any substantial gains. Much of the damage is already irrevocable.
Water pollution hardly gets the kind of coverage it deserves. This robs it of adequate resource allocation. Water pollution has a greater global effect because rivers drain into the seas and oceans that connect continents across climatic zones that, in turn, decide the sustenance and livelihood of myriad species.
Therefore, the behaviour of inland rivers in different countries of the world, their flow, volume and usage pattern as well as pollution levels has a big role to play in mapping the characteristics of oceans. This makes it pertinent for every country to behave responsibly and think globally so that their actions don’t cause trouble for whole humanity.
The oceans are homes to thousands of marine species and plants which have not only a major contribution in maintaining the ecological balance and food chain but also in deciding global weather patterns because effects on the ocean surface and below have its implications on our temperature and rainfall patterns. Indirectly, the damage to the oceanic environment is going to affect our crops and economy, even if we leave out the other environment adversities.
Governments must unite and invest heavily on innovation, technology sharing and research to study oceanic patterns and the adverse developments therein so that early steps can be taken.
Cleaning up rivers and seas is a technology-intensive and expensive project, which is why the cooperation between countries and technology sharing is important. More trees need to be planted, deforestation has to be stopped, water recycling/harvesting must be made mandatory, e-vehicles must be promoted aggressively—and India must show the way.