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How Sunscreen Could Be Destroying Coral Reefs

We all want to make sure that our oceans remain as healthy as possible because everything in the world is intrinsically tied to the more than 70 percent of water that makes up the planet. Anything that happens to the ocean will have an effect felt even in the deepest parts of the hottest deserts, and this is already being observed today. Years of abuse and the overuse of carbon emitting resources has taken its toll on our oceans and the results are devastation like few have ever seen all occurring in our lifetimes. Just to outline some of the most serious problems caused by any damaged or changes to our oceans include:

  • Super storms
  • Food scarcity
  • Mass extinction
  • Changes in weather patterns
  • Hotter summers and colder winters
  • More frequent wildfires

Looking at all those factors, it’s only natural that you would want to do everything in your power to make sure that our oceans stay in tip top form, but what you might not know is that you could be damaging it without actually intending to. Take your sunscreen products for example since some brands contain chemicals that are so toxic to coral reefs that they affect the very DNA of the young marine beds. The chemical in question is oxybenzone and it causes things like endocrine disruption and even DNA damage which then lead to the deaths of the corals in question. The chemical also has the ability to cause or at the very least worsen the bleaching process of corals which is where they reject the presence of organisms that they need in order to thrive through a symbiotic relationship. As you might imagine, this then causes the deaths of the corals and it’s occurring pretty broadly already because of climate change.

coral reefs

coral reefs

Now, there are a few things about this issue that are quite unfortunate since it’s been happening for a long time and would therefore take a lot of effort to change. For one thing, people have been using sunscreen for a very long time and it’s actually encouraged by doctors in order to prevent skin damage due to the harsh rays of the sun. As a result, a lot of people have been blissfully protected without ever knowing that such protection was actually causing harm if they swam near where coral reefs are. Heck, even those who are trying to preserve coral reefs wear sunscreen and so it’s an ironic situation.

With that said, the solution to the problem seems pretty simple since there are actually sunscreen brands that don’t contain the dangerous chemical. So all you really need to do is to switch to those brands. When the companies making the sunscreen products containing said chemical realize the problem, they would either change their recipe in order to reflect the wants of their customers or campaign against the findings of the research that oxybenzone. In any case, the most important thing that you can do is to inform people of this problem so that they will know.

Chemical Pollution

The deep ocean is subject to chemical pollution from a variety of sources. As well as oil pollution following disasters, the deep ocean receives chemical input from a wide range of sources including run-off from land, waste disposal, pollution from shipping, routine oil drilling and inadvertent dumping.

With increased human use of the open ocean for transport, mineral extraction and disposal, almost all of these sources of chemical pollution are increasing, resulting in greater and greater impact to the deep ocean and its ecosystems. Researching the potential impacts of pollution is of great importance so that the use of natural and chemical resources can be done in more sustainable ways.

marine pollution

marine pollution

Pollution in the deep sea is rarely more dramatic and immediate than that from a deep-water blow-out and the resulting oil spill. Pollution from less sensational sources is also causing widespread impact to deep-sea systems. Chemical contaminants, produced by humans, are increasingly reaching remote areas of the ocean and finding their way into the deep-sea food web. Many deep-sea animals, including fish and octopus, have measurable and sometimes high levels of toxic pollutants.

Life in the deep sea may be less resilient to its effects. Deep-sea organisms are typically subjected to a smaller range of environmental variation than shallow-water organisms and they live in areas that have not previously been affected by many chemical pollutants. The lifestyles of deep-sea organisms may be less conducive to dealing with chemical stress. Although marine pollution has a long history, until the twentieth century most scientists believed that the vast oceans had virtually unlimited ability to dilute and render pollution harmless. Increasing evidence to the contrary, including in the open ocean outside of regional jurisdiction, resulted in the formulation of significant international legislation to counter pollution. These laws have been effective at reducing some types of pollution that could reach the deep sea, particularly pollution from shipping, and regulating other polluting activities. However, despite regulation chemical pollution is becoming a more important stressor to deep-sea organisms and ecosystems.

Marine Pollution

Marine pollution occurs when harmful, or potentially harmful, effects result from the entry into the ocean of chemicals, particles, industrial, agricultural and residential waste, noise, or the spread of invasive organisms. Eighty percent of pollution to the marine environment comes from the land. One of the biggest sources is called nonpoint source pollution, which occurs as a result of runoff. Nonpoint source pollution includes many small sources, like septic tanks, cars, trucks, and boats, plus larger sources, such as farms, ranches, and forest areas. Millions of motor vehicle engines drop small amounts of oil each day onto roads and parking lots. Much of this, too, makes its way to the sea.

marine pollution

marine pollution

“Water and air, the two essential fluids on which all life depends, have become global garbage cans.” – Jacques-Yves Cousteau

Many potentially toxic chemicals adhere to tiny particles which are then taken up by plankton and benthos animals, most of which are either deposit or filter feeders. In this way, the toxins are concentrated upward within ocean food chains. Many particles combine chemically in a manner highly depletive of oxygen, causing estuaries to become anoxic. When pesticides are incorporated into the marine ecosystem, they quickly become absorbed into marine food webs. Once in the food webs, these pesticides can cause mutations, as well as diseases, which can be harmful to humans as well as the entire food web.

Toxic metals can also be introduced into marine food webs. These can cause a change to tissue matter, biochemistry, behavior, reproduction, and suppress growth in marine life. Also, many animal feeds have a high fish meal or fish hydro lysate content. In this way, marine toxins can be transferred to land animals, and appear later in meat and dairy products. People often think that water pollution comes from big factories, but most of the pollution comes from everyday people doing everyday things. This kind of pollution is called nonpoint-source pollution because we cannot point out where it came from directly. There are a lot of videos, documentaries, articles and even websites that caters to this kind of topic. Anyone can browse through the internet to know a thing or two about helping our oceans and other bodies of water. If you want to get these videos, visit multihosters review for more information.

Protecting The Ocean

With the continuous exploitation of the oceans that lead to its destruction, many environmental activists initiate ocean and marine life protection acts and treaties. These aim to preserve, protect, and sustain the oceans. Some of the acts and treaties are:

• Convention on Fishing and Conservation of Living Resources of the High Seas

Due to the absence of borders in high seas, conservation issues are quite difficult to resolve in the past. Moreover, there are different approaches to the exploitation of marine resources from country to country. Thus, it became an important issue for countries to work together in order to have a unified front on sustainable fishing. Its main purpose is to create a framework through which international conservation laws can be enforced on the high seas. The goal is accomplished if the conservation is mutually beneficial to everyone. Today, marine conservation became more challenging due to new fishing technologies.

• Marine Mammal Protection Act

This legislation was introduced back in 1972, which prohibit the import, export, sale, and hunting of marine mammals within the jurisdiction of the United States. People on ecotourism holidays are to keep their distance from marine mammals during their trip. This is due to a provision in the act which classifies ‘taking’ a marine mammal as ‘hunting, killing, capture, and/or harassment of any marine mammal; or, the attempt at such.’ People who are caught harassing wildlife will have to face a set of stiff penalties.

• Marine Protection, Research, and Sanctuaries Act of 1972

This is also known as ‘Ocean Dumping Act’ that allows the regulation of dumping activities of industrial and municipal wastes into the oceans or other territorial waters of the United States. Its goal is to ‘prevent or strictly limit the dumping into ocean waters of any material that would adversely affect human health, welfare, or amenities, or the marine environment, ecosystems, or economic potentialities.’ Moreover, this mechanism was able to warn tourists of dangerous metal toxicities in different bodies of water. Thus, tourist can now swim, snorkel, dive, and fish in the oceans.

protecting the ocean

protecting the ocean

• United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea

This law is one of the most important maritime environmental treaties because it makes clear responsibilities and rights of all nations that use the oceans. The set of regulations are used in order to protect the health and resources of the oceans from rampant overuse of individuals and businesses. In an extent, it also set national and international water boundaries, as well as the exclusive economic zones of all countries that touch the oceans.

Top 10 Beach Resorts Around The World

Due to busy schedule and too much stress, some people chose to enjoy in the beach by simply staying in resorts, wandering in the nearby areas, and doing fun activities in the beach. Some may think that it can be boring, but if you think about it there are several leisure interests that anyone can do and appreciate in beach resorts.

four seasons resort maui at wailea

four seasons resort maui at wailea

Here is the list of top ten beach resorts around the world:

• Four Seasons Resort Maui at Wailea

Do you want to enjoy the Pacific view and try different activities in the beach? Then this resort should be on your list to visit. With its U-shaped building, most guest rooms have full ocean views of the lapping waves of the Pacific. Moreover, there are several activities that you can do like working on your fitness using the outdoor cardio room, rent a kayak, and have a private surf lesson.

• The Ritz-Carlton, Laguna Niguel, Dana Point, California

This beach resort is located at the top of 150 foot bluff in Orange County offering panoramic ocean views. Below is the Salt Creek Beach where families can enjoy their drinks and snacks, and the children can build a sandcastle. The beach is one of best place to surf, and they offer a one-on-one two hour surf experience.

• Ocean House, Watch Hill, Rhode Island

If you are looking for a place with private balconies that offer a light and airy stunning ocean view, then this is the perfect one. The Ocean House is a replica of the original hotel that first opened in 1868. Today, the place is incorporated with modern technology updates. Plus, the stunning coastal scapes of the place add a scenic view to the place.

• Montage Laguna Beach

This is another beach resort in Orange County that offers the stunning views of the Pacific Ocean. With its relaxing poolside, this is where most people go to relax and consider it as a haven.

• WaterColor Inn & Resort, Santa Rosa Beach, Florida

This resort has a relaxing guest rooms that exude coastal charm with big windows and blue accents along Florida’s Gulf Coast. Furthermore, the resort has a beachfront real estate where guests may rent a ‘beach set-up’ that consists of two chairs and one umbrella.

• Acqualina Resort & Spa, Sunny Isles Beach, Florida

If you are looking for an exclusive beach, then this one is right for you. Only the hotel guests and members of the beach club are able to enjoy the place. The place is 400 feet along the Atlantic Ocean coastline, the perfect location for shell hunting and strolling. They have a chic pool with clear water and comfy red lounge chairs.

• Mandarin Oriental, Sanya

The best place to relax and sunbathe overlooking a private beach and the South China Sea is here. The resort has a panoramic view of the sea, complete with a private sundeck, gazebo, and an infinity pool.

• Viceroy Anguilla

Overlooking the Caribbean Sea, this resort is the best place for snorkeling and scuba excursions. Guests will be able to view colorful reefs and mysterious shipwrecks that lie below the surface of the turquoise waters.

• The St. Regis Bora Bora Resort

The Bora Bora can be viewed in this resort with its two-bedroom overwater villas boasting private decks and glass panels in the floor. There are also several fine places to eat, where outdoor deck is prime real estate around dusk.

• Sugar Beach, A Viceroy Resort, St. Lucia

In addition to the stunning view of the Caribbean Sea, the resort is also surrounded with tree-studded mountains. It has more than 100 acres of tropical rainforest and white sand beaches. Plus, you can experience scuba diving and explore under the sea.

Travelling is also a crucial part of the vacation and the best way to maximize your holiday is to travel in style. BMW is one of the best car brands that you should consider using. If you are interested to buy or rent a BMW car, then visit bmwpedia.net for more information.

Exploring The Deep Sea

The ocean is a very fascinating part of our environment. It covers more than 70 percent of the surface of the Earth. It is hard to imagine but 97 percent of the Earth’s water can be found in our oceans. The tiny percentage that is not in the ocean, about two percent, is frozen up in glaciers and ice caps.

People have always wondered how it looks like below the waters of the ocean, what kind of sea creatures are living there, and how can these creatures survive under the water. Thanks to the evolution of technology, there are now several instruments that are used by scientists and researchers to study the ocean.

exploring the deep sea

exploring the deep sea

Submersible

Usually, scientists and researchers investigated the ocean from ships on its surface. But, it is more important to be able to immerse in the environment so that they can understand it better. One of the world’s first deep-sea human submersible was built in 1964. It is used to find a hydrogen bomb lost in the Mediterranean and to explore the wreck of the Titanic. A submersible owned by the US Navy and operated by WHOI, can carry three people at a time, including two scientists and a pilot. It can travel to a depth of 14,800 feet on dives that last six to ten hours.

Robotic Voyagers

Some explorations of the ocean are left to robots because it can harm humans, especially diving in deep parts of the water. The remotely operated vehicles or ROVs are unmanned vessels controlled by scientists from a ship via a tether cable. It contains sonar equipment, video cameras, and still cameras. It also has manipulator arms that are used to collect rock samples, sediment, or ocean life and bring it to the surface.

Autonomous underwater vehicles or AUVs are other robotic voyagers. It can navigate vast distances and collect scientific data without any human control. It is used to survey the mid-ocean or explore the seafloor, descending as far as 19,700 feet. The vehicle can generate detailed maps of the seafloor using sonar, and take photographs of mid-ocean ridges, deep-sea vents, and cold seeps. It can also measure the physical characteristics of the ocean like temperature, salinity, and dissolved oxygen.

Undersea instruments

Some processes of studying the ocean involve constant monitoring. Thus, scientists use different instruments that continuously provide the data that they needed. They have developed sensors that do a wide range of data collection from measuring water temperature and acidity, to image plankton, and to record whale calls.

Profiling buoys is used to measure chemical signatures that monitor the health of the ocean. It can travel down to 330 feet and drift freely. It sends the data back via satellite while ascending to the surface.

Floats and drifters are still currently being used by researchers. It is one of the oldest methods for studying ocean circulation. These instruments are being dropped to the water and the researchers let the ocean carry it wherever it may go.

Acoustic Doppler Current Profiler or ADCP is an instrument used to measure how fast the water is moving across an entire water column. If it is anchored to the seafloor, it can measure the current speed at the bottom, and also at equal intervals all the way up to the surface.

Top 3 Beach Holiday Destinations

Everybody loves taking holiday destinations, especially if you are loaded with too much work or school activities and exams. You can just imagine the sand in your feet, the breeze of the fresh air, the quiet atmosphere, the relaxing sound of the waves, and the warmth of the sun in your skin. Surely, everybody loves to have their ‘vitamin sea’ once in a while. Here are some of the beaches that you would love to visit.

• Barbados

This place is located in the eastern Caribbean, an independent island nation within the British Commonwealth. The hard part is choosing among 60 beaches – all of them public. You can choose between the calm waters of the west coast, also known as Platinum Coast, or surf in the waves of the east coast. There are also lots of activities that you can do like wreck and reef diving, touring rum plantations, or spelunking through Harrison’s Cave.

barbados

barbados

• Punta del Este

This place is a city and resort on the Atlantic Coast in the Maldonado Department of southeaster Uruguay. During the day, tourists can go and dip in the waters, but at night the place is alive with their nightclubs, which people will surely enjoy. This is also the place where The Grand Hotel was located. It is the first five-star hotel where they have 120 rooms with spa, Roman baths, heated indoor and outdoor swimming pools, and a theater.

• Lizard Island

punta del este

punta del este

This secluded island can be found in Australia. The place is perfect for people who are looking for white, sandy beaches, loves diving, and wanted to have privacy. The most important feature is for people who love diving and the sea because it is near the Great Barrier Reef. The location offers world-class diving with sea turtles, dolphins, manta rays, and humpback whales swimming in the waters along with exotic reef fish. There is also a coral reef research stations, which is operated by the Australian Museum on the westernmost point of the island.

If you wanted to know more about different beaches that you can visit, there are several travel blog sites that you can find in the internet. There are also some trip advisors that you can check out. They are offering information about the place, hotels where you can book your stay, and the offered activities and must-see tourist’s spots. Some even uses embedded Google Maps to help people finding the place. If you have you own website and wanted to put one, just go to embedgooglemaps.com for Google Maps. Just simply copy the link generator and paste it in your website.

Interesting Facts About The Ocean

Earth is mostly covered with water, with nearly 71% of its surface or about 362 million square kilometers composing of the ocean. The average depth of ocean is 12,200 feet and has a deepest point called as the Mariana Trench. It is located in the western Pacific with 36,198 feet deep. It is not a surprise that there are mountains below the ocean. There are ocean ridges that form a great mountain range that weaves its way through all the major oceans. It is approximately 40,000 miles or 64,000 kilometer long and is the largest single feature on Earth. The highest mountain that is located in the ocean floor is the Mauna Kea, which can be found in Hawaii. From the ocean floor, its base rises at 33,474 feet but is only 13,680 feet above sea level. You can only view one-third of its whole size. Here are other interesting facts about the ocean.

ocean

ocean

  • The average temperature of the ocean is only 2°C or 39°F.
  • The Monterey Bay Submarine Canyon located in California, is deeper and large in volume than the Grand Canyon.
  • Mount Everest is famous because it is the highest point on the Earth’s surface measuring up to 5.49 miles. But it is still more than 1 mile shorter than the Challenger Deep, the deepest point in the ocean at 6.86 miles.
  • Water pressure at the deepest point in the ocean is more than 8 tons per square inch. This is equivalent to a person trying to hold 50 gigantic jets.
  • The Antarctic ice sheet that forms and melts over the ocean each year is nearly twice the size of the United States.
  • The Great Barrier Reef is the largest living structure on Earth. It measures up to 1,243 miles. It can also be seen from the moon, just like the Great Wall of China.
  • The Gulf Stream off the Atlantic seaboard of the United States flows 300 times faster than the typical flow of the Amazon River, the world’s largest river.

Major Threats To Our Oceans

Since the beginning, people have exploited the ocean. We regarded it as an endless supply of food, a useful transport route, and a convenient place to dump human wastes. Because of these human activities, especially over the last few decades, we have finally pushed the oceans to their limits. The largest living space on Earth is deteriorating very fast due to overfishing, pollution, being taken for granted, carelessly being abused and destroyed by every human. The negative effects of our own selfishness do not only threaten and affect the marine habitats and its species, but the health, living standards, and security of all humans as well.

major threats to our oceans

major threats to our oceans

Unsustainable fishing

90% of the world’s fisheries are already fully exploited and overfished. Billions of unwanted fish and other animals die in the process because some people use destructive methods to pull their catches. Some fishermen uses explosives and bottom trawling, both of it destroying the sea floor habitat and scoops up other species that will be tossed aside. This causes many species to be listed as threatened and endangered. Unsustainable fishing is the largest threat to the ocean life and habitats, and affecting the livelihoods and food security of people all over the world.

Inadequate protection

Our planet is covered with over 70% of the ocean, but only 3.4% of it is being protected. The worst part is, the majority of the world’s few marine parks and reserves are protected in name only. Humans are not properly educated or they simply do not really care about the ocean because they still continue to hunt down endangered species like sharks. Shark finning, where sharks are captured to get their fins, should be stopped.

Tourism and development

People are developing coastlines into housing projects and other tourist developments. Many of the beaches now are inhabited by humans and the intense presence is taking its toll on the marine life.

Shipping

Oceans are also like highways, ships are always travelling to transport people or carry different kinds of goods. Because of this traffic, ships are also leaving marks in the oceans that include: oil spills, ship groundings, anchor damage, and the dumpish of human and oily wastes. All of these marks are endangering marine habitats worldwide.

Oil and gas

Oceans are major sources of oil, gas, and minerals. But due to the prospecting and drilling activities of humans, it poses a major threat to sensitive marine habitats and species. There is also a threat of chemical and oil spills in the ocean floor that can seriously damage the ocean. The worst part is the rehabilitation process for the ocean will took several years before it completely heals the damage.

Pollution

Human wastes in the land greatly affect the marine life. Pollutants in the land, such as: untreated sewage, garbage, fertilizers, pesticides, industrial chemicals, and plastics; eventually goes into the ocean. Some people are even deliberately dumping their wastes in the bodies of water. We all know that one of the major food sources of humans is the oceans. Thus, it is not surprising that the negative effects in the marine life are also harming humans.

Climate change

Still because of human activities, it resulted into global warming and climate change that have already marked an effect on the oceans. We can now observe coral bleaching, rising sea levels, and changing species distributions.

The WWF or the World Wildlife Fund is one of the largest organizations in the world. They aim to conserve nature and ecological processes by preserving biodiversity, ensuring sustainable use of natural resources and promoting the reduction of pollution and wasteful use of resources and energy. They currently have five strategies to attain their goal:

  • Advocate for integrated ocean management
  • Support small-scale fisheries and sustainable aquaculture
  • Promote the value of services provided by ecosystems
  • Manage the impacts of extractive industries
  • Promote sustainable marine tourism

If you are interested to promote caring for the ocean to other people, you can start by volunteering for an organization. There are several local and international groups that you can join. You can contribute by creating a website for your group, with this you will be able to: inform other people about issues in the oceans; encourage people to participate in your activities; and persuade them to join. You can also ask people for donations to help in your projects or you can sell items that can promote the organization’s plans. The income will be used as a source of funds. There are several online marketing tools that can help you. If you wanted to know more, this great website will guide you about the best tool that will suit your needs.

As what Mother Teresa once said, “We ourselves feel that what we are doing is just a drop in the ocean. But the ocean would be less because of that missing drop.” If only people will have more active participation to solve the issues regarding the oceans, then it is possible to still save the marine life and have balance in our nature.

How To Care For The Ocean

If you are going to care about the ocean and save if from all sorts of pollution, start by minding your carbon footprint on the environment. To save the ocean, it all starts with the amount of dirt we all live in the environment. All this dirt will always end up in the ocean when the flash floods come. Start also to check on the amount of energy that you personally take. Use the energy saving bulbs to ensure that you do not end up using a lot of energy. Saving on the energy goes a long way to help in reducing the strain on the oceans to help in generating energy. Choose advanced thermostats that know when to switch on and off.

how to care for the ocean

how to care for the ocean

It always feels nice when we eat the seafood. Some of the seafood might get extinct simply because most people are depending on it so much. Look for alternatives to such cases. The alternatives would give room for the seafood to regrow and become plenty once again. There should be groups all over the world that can actually advocate for the better ocean environment. There is the need to practice sustainable fishing methods. Do not over depend on the ocean for fishing. The list below is more practices that can lead to taking care of the ocean.

– Using fewer plastic products
– Take care of the beach
– Supporting the organizations fighting to protect the ocean
– Influence people living around you to protect the ocean
– Travel the ocean using the accredited vessels