Here are links to three environmental articles on the ocean. As part of the discussion I am hoping to start, I have shared my own thoughts below, but I think it would work best if people read the articles and brainstormed their own thoughts BEFORE reading mine. Enjoy!
While I have always been more interested in terrestrial life than ocean life, my concern for the environment has inevitably led me to the ocean. I feel like this happened because in many cases, the ocean and its inhabitants are getting the worst of humanity’s effects on the environment. Based on “UK’s Deep Sea Mountain Life Filmed” and “Antarctic Fur Seals Feel Climate Impacts,” for instance, the ocean could possibly be the habitat most negatively affected by climate change. By now I am pretty sure there is nothing we can do to stop climate change. We can only slow it down. I’m not sure, though, which or how many species of animals, plants, and other life forms we can save by slowing down climate change. Some might already be doomed, especially ocean inhabitants. We must all do our best to save all the life forms still on Earth, though.
While “UK’s Deep Sea Mountain Life Filmed” focused mostly on coral and other life forms living in the deepest parts of the ocean, the other two articles really opened my eyes to a hard truth about marine mammals: The ban on hunting them ultimately won’t do anything, not even if the law is rarely broken, if we keep on polluting our oceans and speeding up climate change. Marine mammals, as well as other ocean animals like sea turtles, are facing all kinds of threats nowadays, like being hunted and getting caught in fishing gear. Even if those threats are lessened, the ocean will keep getting more and more polluted and more and more affected by climate change if we don’t do something fast. This is why, even though most marine mammals are not technically endangered, I consider all ocean animals somewhat endangered, because the ocean itself is. It’s sad, but true.
As discussed in the article on sea otters, much of our waste (human, pet, household, industrial, etc) ends up in the oceans, whether it was intended to or not. I’d really like to know more about what we can do to stop this from happening. According to “Otters: The Picky Eaters of the Pacific,” one thing that might help those poor otters off the coast of California is ceasing to flush cat litter down the toilet. I’m sure there are more environmentally friendly ways to dispose of cat waste, and I will definitely look into those when I get a cat, which I’m hoping to do someday. Even though it would make the cat owner’s house less stinky, toilet training a cat obviously wouldn’t help in this case. I am sure there are more actions we can take to stop waste from being dumped in the ocean, and I would like to learn more about these actions and start taking them soon. I will encourage other people to do so as well, before it is too late.
Hearing about deep sea mountains being explored makes me very optimistic. Learning more about our natural environments is one of the most crucial steps in saving them. Hopefully shedding light on the deep seas, which we still know little about, will help us be more mindful of our impact on them.
I had no idea otters hid stones in pouches under their arms! How cute is that?!