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Ocean Pollution. By: Alexis Kirven. What Causes Ocean Pollution?. One of the major causes of ocean pollution is the discharge of crude oil, accidental or deliberate, in the oceans. This happens in course of transportation of ships, when these ships discharge their waste in the ocean.

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Ocean Pollution

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    1. Ocean Pollution By: Alexis Kirven

    2. What Causes Ocean Pollution? • One of the major causes of ocean pollution is the discharge of crude oil, accidental or deliberate, in the oceans. • This happens in course of transportation of ships, when these ships discharge their waste in the ocean. • Ocean pollution statistics give the gruesome picture of the hazard the marine life is facing. This problem is faced by all the oceans of the world. • Transportation of vessels carrying various ores can also lead to pollution of the water body when these ore sediments are accidentally dumped in it.

    3. What effect the Ocean Pollution? • Ocean pollution is hazardous for marine life. Oil spilled in oceans is disastrous for all forms of marine life including coral reefs, fish, and marine plants. • Coral reefs are in fact the worst affected as excessive ocean pollution and global warming threaten to wipe them off the planet within a few more years. • Ocean pollution leads to depletion of oxygen dissolved in water, which in turn makes it difficult for various sea animals to breathe underwater. • Humans are not left out the hazardous effects of ocean pollution as marine life is a major source of food for humans.

    4. Ocean Pollution prevention Prevention of marine water pollution emphasizes on identifying the various ocean pollution causes and finding a solution for them. These include • Ensuring that there is no leakage of crude oil from tankers by regular monitoring of vessels by proper agencies. • Declaring deliberate discharge of crude oil by vessels and industrial waste by industries on land as an offense with a significant penalty. • Ensuring that garbage produced by humans is treated properly instead of just dumping it in the oceans. • Ensuring that the amount of air pollution, which causes phenomena such as acid rain, is lessened if not totally curbed. • Understanding the importance of marine life for us and making sure that we don't cause harm to them.

    5. Different types of Ocean Pollution • Oil • Dumping • Sewage • Air Pollution • Agricultural Runoff • Sunscreen

    6. Oil • Petroleum products used for fuel from the earth deep below the ocean surfaces. Occasionally, offshore drilling rigs experience accidental leaks. Ships carrying oil have also been known to cause devastating oil spills, but these are large-scale disasters. Oil seepage occurs on a smaller but continuous level, leaching from factories and other plants. In fact, one of the greatest sources of oil pollution is people who pour various cooking oils and grease down the sink drains in their homes.

    7. Dumping • A portion of the billions if not trillions of tons of trash produced each year finds its way into ocean waters. This comes as no surprise to anyone who has seen plastic bottles and other waste floating onto the beaches. Trash is often dumped from ships and offshore drilling rigs directly into the sea. Aside from trash, industrial waste is one of the major issues when it comes to ocean dumping. These toxic chemicals, including radioactive chemicals, are a death sentence for ocean life forms.

    8. Sewage • Animal waste and human wastewater from toilets and other household activities such as bathing and laundering as well as food preparation are often washed directly into the ocean from coastal communities. Untreated sewage contains microbes or pathogens that precipitate disease when infected seafood is consumed or skin contact occurs. In some cases, solid sludge from treated sewage is also dumped into the oceans.

    9. Air Pollution • Air pollution and ocean pollution are inextricably linked. Pollution from automobiles and factories is translated into acid rain, which falls into the ocean and mingles with its waters.

    10. Agricultural Runoff • Rainwater washes pesticides and fertilizers into smaller water sources such as streams and rivers, which ultimately carny those toxic chemicals into the ocean. Another source of agricultural runoff is animal waste, which is not treated like human sewage. For example, runoff from Midwestern farms into the Mississippi River is responsible for the "Dead Zone" in the Gulf of Mexico, which features very little marine life.

    11. Sunscreen • Sunscreen is a lesser known source of pollution, but can have grave effects. The chemicals in sunscreen worn by swimmers and divers washes off into the ocean water and coats plant-life on coral reefs and suffocates them. Vast swaths of reefs have been destroyed, but there are eco-friendly sunscreen products on the market that help to prevent this terrible side-effect, while still protecting skin from cancerous sunrays.

    12. Economic Impact of Pollution • The economic impact of ocean pollution is far-reaching. Since it affects the population of seafood, the fishing and crabbing industries, among others, are directly affected. The local economies of coastal towns that depend on these industries can be devastated by a large scale disaster, such as an oil spill. Tourism also suffers in beach communities that are overcome by pollutants in the ocean.

    13. Ocean Pollution Regulations The US government and international conventions have enacted many laws and treaties to prohibit the dumping of wastes and other contaminates into the world oceans. Such regulations include: • 1890 River and Harbors Act (discharge of dredged materials) • 1972 Marine Protection, Research and Sanctuaries Act (Ocean Dumping Act) • 1972 Treaty, the Convention on the Prevention of Marine Pollution by Dumping of Wastes and Other Matter (London Convention) • 1973 The International Convention for the Prevention of Pollution from Ships (MARPOL) • 1988 Ocean Dumping Ban Act • 2000 Beaches Environmental Assessment and Coastal Health Act (BEACH Act)