My Plan to Protect and Manage our Oceans, Seas and Marine Resources.
As a 12 year old boy growing up in the highly urbanized city of Middle East, me and my friends do not see beautiful Fishes dying, colorful Coral Reefs disappearing, majestic Polar Bears getting emaciated and endangered, Sharks decimated, and Green Turtles and Dugongs choking with plastic debris. Learning what’s happening to our oceans and marine life is utmost shocking.
We, human beings, consider ourselves superior of all life forms on the planet, but, we are merely slaves of plastic and our greed for ‘more’ — more consumption, more industrialization, more oil drilled from sea-beds and spilled, more shark-fin soup, more comforts and more wars to win.
Our ‘more’ list is endless.
Globally, incessant coastal development, increasing ‘single-use’of plastic bottles , utensils and dumping of urbanization wastes and fishing nets in seas is eventually creating enormous marine debris, turning our oceans into plastic soup.
It’s alarming that Gulf’s seas are one of the most contaminated in the world. With a 5th of world’s oil passing through these waters, increasing pollution-levels due to frequent oil leaks from ships and pipelines, dumping of wastes into the sea besides climate change, has created a noxious marine environment.
My plan to protect and conserve our marine environment starts with ‘Reduce, Reduce and Reduce Plastic’.
Anything plastic should have to be re-used, eliminating the term ‘single-use’. Reusable water-bottles need to be compulsory in public outlets and schools. Countries like Kenya and Rwanda are examples with complete ban on use of Plastic, bracing severe short term setbacks to the economy. Rich countries have no excuse from showing similar courage.
Re-designed biodegradable alternatives like eco-friendly compostable cutlery for cafeterias, biodegradable fishing nets and radio-frequency identification tags for locating damaged and abundant nets should also be looked into.
‘Plastic-swallowing’ vending machine should be installed at all accessible beaches — machines that dispense coins on being ‘fed’ plastics!! For this, all plastic-using industries should be taxed extra to fund these plastic-hungry machines.
Conserving oceans need strict policy preventing drilling for oil in sensitive marine ecosystems and habitats, especially around reproductive habitats of marine life, which accounts for 17 % of global population’s protein intake. On land, spraying of germinating seeds by planes for afforestation would lead to reduction of CO2 levels in oceans, diminishing acidification.
Effective conservation action should include Compulsory Education (CE) and Awareness Programs (AP) for children , grocery store helpers, and sales persons all over the world, spreading conservation awareness and appreciation of the original source of life on earth — our seas and oceans and its marine resources.