Did you know that 71 percent of the Earth is composed of oceans, and only 29 percent is the land we live on? Also, did you know plastic normally takes up to a thousand years i.e. ten entire centuries to decompose; and even then, it does not decompose completely?
It is a sad reality that the water-composed areas of our world are neglected despite their majority. Just like we, humans, care for ourselves and our loved ones by taking care of our land as it has a direct impact on our lives, it is astonishing that we do not do even half as much for the marine life, which, according to some researches, is still only half discovered.
A population that is even more in number than humans, and the oceans that form more part of the world than our claimed lands, are exposed to extreme forms of pollution. From oil spills to plastic waste, our oceans are becoming the ‘dumpsters’ they never were.
While each one of the world’s persons is responsible for keeping our planet safe and healthy for the present and future generations, it is the authorities at national or governmental levels that have the capacity to actually implement a change as big as an anti-pollution or cleaning campaign for the oceans. In fact, there are some ways that can help reverse or slow down the damage that plastic has done to the oceans and marine life.
How Can the Authorities Reduce Plastic Waste in Oceans?
- Detect and Clean Ocean Operation Using Drones: Drones are already a popular and modern technology, especially in the areas of photography, war, and whatnot. Wouldn’t it be better if this technology was used to do our Mother Earth a kind favor to remove its burdens?
It is an idea that governmental or national level authorities ought to have the resources to carry out a drone operation worldwide with some time intervals. Drones like the mavic 2 enterprise, can be used by these authorities to monitor and detect where the oceans have the most plastic waste, and then use manual or mechanical means to filter out that waste and recycle it when possible.
- Initiate Deals with the Most Influential Manufacturers to Start a No-Plastic Campaign: Where do most of the plastic waste come from? You guessed it right – polythene bags. A majority of the world’s manufacturers and retailers sell goods to the population in plastic bags which ultimately go a long route from our household dustbins to being dumped into the oceans. These Pounds of Plastic pose severe threats to the marine species, including choking and other hazards to the inhabitants of the ocean. If the most powerful authorities of every nation came together with the most influential manufacturers in every country to ban or minimize the production of polythene bags or plastic packaging altogether, not only will the ocean clean up, but our lands will also be much lesser polluted. Alternative options like paper bags are already being encouraged in many parts of the world, but a stronger and stricter implementation of these ideas need to be made.
How Can You Help Reduce Plastic Waste in Oceans?
- Choose Re-usable Products Over Single-Use Plastic Products: All single-use plastic products like straws, plastic cups, and other such items have a very short product life and a very long destructive effect on the environment. The reason why ‘single-use’ is mentioned here despite all plastic products being hazardous is that single-use items are often used more and hence, create more waste. For example, if you used a single-use plastic cup every time you drank water i.e. 8 times a day, you would be throwing out at least 56 plastic cups every week! Hence, opt for buying reusable bags, re-usable cups etc to minimize the number of plastic items that are thrown out.
- Stop the Use of Products that Include Microbeads: Microbeads are an increasingly common ingredient in numerous products, especially face scrubs, despite the widespread concern for reducing plastic wastage. Play your part in the goodness act by stopping the use of any products that have plastic microbeads in them.
- Help Where It Counts: We buy expensive and branded products for ourselves all the time, and it really does no good to us or anyone around us – however, if we could spare some money to help the non-profit organizations that are working to reduce and clean plastic waste, our money would have a higher value. Some such NGOs that need your support in the cause are Oceanic Society and Plastic Soup Foundation.
- Understand How to Recycle and Help Others: The statistics for worldwide plastic recycling states that only 9 percent of the world’s plastic gets recycled.Change that – learn what goes where, and what can be recycled and how. Once you think you understand recycling well, educate others around you to do the same.
Plastic waste is not a new issue, but it is an increasingly alarming one. We all need to do our roles to save our oceans because we have all somehow been a reason behind this pollution.