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THE Baneful Marine Life Crisis

By: Eshita Gupta

The blessing of life on this coherent planet of ours originated solely from the water bodies like oceans and rivers and this isn’t the first time we’re hearing of this fact.  Colorful coral bodies, tiny bioluminescent aquatic organisms that lay deep into the darkness of seabed along with the gigantic majestic sharks all contribute to the web of this ecosystem and this article is just another insight into how we mortals are selfishly writing the tragic fate of these organisms residing in our oceans.

Image credits: Xianyu hao 

Water Pollution during the Covid-19 Pandemic

The return of Dolphins in the Bay of Bengal as well an improvement in the quality of air was witnessed during the time of the Covid-19 pandemic, but, all of these positive changes in the environment as well as water bodies were soon outnumbered by the increasing cases of adverse effects on aquatic habitats due to the rise in the amount of plastic waste disposal.

The hazardous dumping of biomedical waste including masks, gloves, shields and PPE’s has majorly contributed to the ever-increasing plastic waste disposition in the water bodies. Also, due to the pandemic, lockdown policies established in many countries have led to a surge in the demand for online shopping for home delivery, which ultimately increases the number of household wastes from shipped package materials. In light of the ongoing pandemic, many countries have also postponed their waste recycling process contributing even more to the water pollution and harming aquatic culture.

Dumping of Chemicals

The artificial waste that commonly reaches the ocean mainly constitutes of detergents, pesticides, fertilizers, polythene, industrial chemicals, and sewage. The excess of these harmful chemicals triggers a massive amount of algal bloom in water bodies resulting in scarcity of oxygen for the remaining marine life and creating “dead zones” in the water, which only provides life to a handful of aquatic organisms.  Some of these chemicals climb the ladder and reach high up to the food-chain through biomagnification, endangering a lot more species than just marine life.

Negative influences through Light Pollution

The artificial light commonly used by us at night, penetrates deep into the water, creating a completely different world for fishes living the urban areas. Light disrupts the normal life of the fishes to which some species have evolved timing of migration, reproducing, and feeding. Artificial light at night can make it easier for predators to find smaller prey and can majorly affect breeding in fishes.

What can we do?

Some of the potential strategies that can be adopted by us is the encouragement of reuse and recycling of plastic to reduce dumping of plastic.  Saving electricity, dampening of lights and of course, saving lots and lots of water! We have to spread awareness about the importance of proper sewage treatment and disposal along with responsible usage of chemicals on both, political and consumer levels.

    Eshita Gupta

    I'm passionate about advocating for environmental issues and I'm trying to use my voice to make this world a more sustainable and peaceful place for all of us! Find me on twitter @aslytherinwolff

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