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Clean Water Information and Marine Life
 by: Helena Ray
  • Ocean pollution is a problem that directly affects ocean organisms and the natural balance of the water. Oil spills, toxic waste, and the dumping of other materials all contribute to the broad term "Ocean Pollution".

    Toxic waste arrives from leakage of landfills, dumps, mines, and farms. Syringes, laboratory rats, human stomach lining, navy decontamination kits, test tubes with various substance (with radioactive makings), tampon applicators etc. One of the main sources of pollution to the ocean is from sewage pipes, which share space with storm drains. These storm drains are full of trash due to littering. Marine pollution has an overwhelming long lasting and often deadly affect on marine wildlife. Every year volunteers find animals entangled in pieces of trash.

  • In many large and small bodies of water, excessive amounts of nitrogen and phosphorous result in overpopulation of plants and algae. When plants and algae die, bacterial decomposers remove oxygen from the water, which in turn kills fish and other marine life.Trash and floating debris in waterways have become significant pollutants especially in area where a large volume of trash is generated in a concentrated area. Trash in water bodies contributes to visual pollution. It also poses a threat to citizen awareness, also key to a successful trash management program. Remember there are environmental consequences to littering.

  • More info on Marine Life:
    There have been many studies done over the years and it seems toxic man made bacteria found in the oceans is harmful to the marine life and also to humans. Previously, unknown bacteria and viruses in the oceans are killing marine life and threatening human health. There are increasing reports of dying coral, diseased shellfish and waters infected with human virus as the seas rise in temperature and pollution from the land intensifies. About 10 percent of the coral worldwide has died and if present trends and conditions continue another 20 to 30 percent of the coral could be lost, said by James Porter, an ocean studies specialist at the University of Georgia. In many cases, he said, researchers had not previously identified the pathogens viruses, bacteria and fungi killing the coral.

  • Clean Water and Oceans:
    Ocean pollution is a problem that directly affects ocean organisms and the natural balance of the water. It indirectly affects human health and resources. Oil spills, toxic waste and the dumping of other materials all contribute to the broad term "Ocean Pollution" Because oceans cover over 70% of the surface of the earth, water sources are the perfect carriers of pollution.

  • Toxic Waste:
    Toxic waste is the most harmful form of pollution to marine creatures and human alike.

  • Oil Pollution:
    Sources and affects of oil in the ocean
    When it comes to mixing oil and water, ocean's suffer from far more than an occasional devastating spill. Only about 5 percent of oil pollution in the oceans is due to major tanker accident.

  • Toxic Material:
    Metals and slowly degrading chemicals threaten inland and coastal water. Industrial, agriculture, household cleaning, gardening, and automotive products regularly end up in coastal waters.

  • Dangerous Debris:
    Trash can kill When odds and ends of life on land-particularly plastic -end up in the sea, they can harm marine life when they are mistaken as food or entangle animals.

  • Deposits & Withdrawals:
    Not only are oceans used as dumping grounds, but they also have recently become the source for materials which by removing them could have serious consequences. Toxic wastes arrive from the leakage of landfills, dumps, mines and farms. Sewage and industrial wastes introduce chemicals pollutants such as PCB, DDT, and Sevin. Farm chemicals (Insecticides and herbicides) along with heavy metals (e.g., mercury and zinc) can have a disastrous affect on marine life and humans alike.

  • Ocean Dumping:
    The lawful ocean dumping of various pollutants was once common practice, but is now regulated. However, the wastes that were dumped into the ocean in the early 1900's remain there still. Human waste, ground-up garbage, water from bathing, and plastics all contribute to ocean dumping. Examples of trash found in the ocean are:Syringes, laboratory rats, human stomach lining, Navy decontamination kits, test tubes with various substance (with radioactive markings), tampon applicators, and a wallet-sized photo of a dead communist dictator.

  • One of the main reasons trash finds its way to the ocean is the fact that some sewage pipes share their space with storm drains. Rainfall (At least 1/4 of an inch) causes the sewage pipes to flood and the sewage wastes (Basically anything you flush down the toilet), mingles with the storm drain which flows unhindered to a water source.

  • Balloons have been known to find their way into animals such as sperm whales, locking their digestive tracks, causing the animal to die. Plastic six-pack rings choke various animals and animals for food mistake other waste. Basically any unnatural trash can be harmful to ocean life.

  • Over 99 percent of living space on earth is ocean.
    After centuries of seafaring, we're only now beginning to plumb the workings of our watery planet. The deeper we go, the cleaner it becomes. No matter who we are or where we live, we all have a hand-and a stake-in what happen in the seas. More than three-quarters of coastal ocean pollution originates on land. Unhealthy oceans hold hidden dangers for everyone. This exhibition reminds us that in ways we may never have even considered, were all seafarers.


  • Marine pollution has an overwhelming, long lasting, and often deadly effect on marine wildlife. Every year volunteers find animals entangled in pieces of trash. They easily become entangled in floating or trash left on the beach. Birds become entangled in litter they have selected for nesting. Debris becomes wrapped around an animal's limb, fins or flippers causing circulation loss and amputation. Animals hindered by trailing debris are more vulnerable to predator. Heavy large plastic sheets suffocate or entrap sand dwelling animal and drown those that rise to the surface to breath. Accidental ingestion of trash injuries and kills marine animals. Turtles confuse flowing plastic bags with jellyfish one of there favorite treats.

  • Sea birds eat rubbish because of their Haphazard eating habits. Many animals cannot regurgitate an item once it has been swallowed, and it often becomes wedged in their throat and digestive track. Debris that doesn't pass from an animals digestive track gives a false sense of fullness, some animals will stop eating and slowly starve to death. Ingested liter such as cigarette butts can also poison wild life releasing toxins into the blood stream.

  • Keeping Oceans Wild:
    Marine reserves are like national parks, and they are critical to keeping the world's oceans clean and productive. Placing important ocean areas off-limits is already reaping tremendous benefits; each of us can participate in protecting marine life and habitat for the future. People enjoy the beauty of the ocean and the bounty of its waters but may not understand that their everyday actions-boating, construction, improper waste disposal, ignoring protected areas; etc.- can impact the ocean and its resources. Long-term planning for growth, development and use of coastal areas is key to the continued productivity of the ocean.

    Using chemically treated household products contaminate the marine life. Phosphorous cause suffocation (kills the oxygen in water) to the marine life. You, your friends and family enjoy the beauty of the ocean and the bounty of its water, but may not understand their everyday actions can cause serious danger, to our living breathing sea life. Improper waste disposal and using chemically treated household products (ex. Laundry detergent, toilet cleaner, degreaser, and floor cleaner).

  • Also, off the subject of ocean pollution thousands of children die each year or become severely ill from accidentally consuming household products. All natural products work just as well. Please reconsider your choice in chemical verses all natural household products. (Click here "a link to all natural cleaning products"). We can make huge strides in protecting the many precious natural resources in and around our waterways. Long term planning for growth, development use of coastal areas is key to continued productivity of our oceans.
    First, is properly dispose of trash (Please STOP LITTERING and RECYCLE!!). Second, find alternatives to household products (click below for more info) and third, Protect the Oceans and Marine life. By not buying a lot of plastic get a water filter, and have the reusable water bottles delivered to your door. Also, stop buying Styrofoam and other non-biodegradable products.

  • If everyone contributed to the steps above a nation wide plan could reduce the damage to coastal areas by 25%. The Oceans Conservancy's (Ocean Action Network) asks you to make your voice heard by making decision on important marine conservation issues, they offer a variety of advocacy campaigns. These are listed right on their home page.

  • The damage were doing to ourselves and the earth has become painfully obvious. We must remember that great change is needed and great change is only going to occur when large groups of people come together and unite for a common cause. If we want to leave something for the future generation we must start taking some immediate steps to stop contributing to the decline.

    First, by no longer using products that harm our eco-system. By taking action on our health to cleanse, nourish and protect ourselves and our families, we are improving our health. We need to protect ourselves from the toxic environment we created. By working together we will reverse the direction past generations have created and build a new world for our children and ourselves.

  • Ask Your Members of Congress To Co-Sponsor the Clean Cruise Ships Act!

About the Author
Helena Ray is the creator of Convictions of the Heart (, a website dedicated to helping people become aware of the current environmental problems and the personal effects on your health. Convictions of the Heart supports all green merchants and offers a variety of environmentally friendly products, all natural products, and whole foods.

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