Plant manufactory prey for whales, sea animals, seafood and crustaceans
Plastic surrounds us. It is not just the obvious places—like water bottles and straws. It is also used to build our cars and is found in our face washes and fabrics. With the invention of plastic in the early 20th century, we became a world that relished the privilege of cheap, easy-to-produce plastic pieces. Plastic has many benefits—it has allowed us to prevent heart attacks stents that open up arteries are often made of plastic and provide water to people in need. Depending on the type of plastic and where it lands, items can take days to hundreds of years to break down into very small pieces, which likely never biodegrade.VIDEO ON THE TOPIC: Why Killer Whales Are APEX Predators!
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- Heartbreaking Images That Show the Impact of Plastic on Animals in the Oceans
- Even the Deepest Parts of the Ocean Are Polluted With Startling Amounts of Plastic
- The Devolution of the Seas
- The state of our oceans – The damaging effects of ocean pollution
- Impact of Oil Spills on Marine Life
- WHALE PRIMER
Heartbreaking Images That Show the Impact of Plastic on Animals in the Oceans
These distressing photos reveal the devastating impact of the plastic crisis that is blighting the planet's oceans. The images, which have been taken by photographers around the world, show everything from turtles trapped in fishing nets to dead whales with their bellies full of debris.
Every year, humanity produces around million tons of plastic, with about eight million tons of the material entering the world's oceans—according to the United Nations Environmental Program. This flow of debris severely impacts the ocean environment and marine life.
Plastic pieces are frequently ingested by a wide range of animals—either directly, by mistaking it for food, or indirectly through the consumption of prey. These types of interaction with plastic can kill animals by strangling or suffocating them, or causing them to starve, but encounters with plastic can also have impacts short of death, like pain, lower survival rates, and loss of reproductive viability," she said.
Seabirds are especially vulnerable, as are filter feeders like many whales and creatures like sea turtles. According to the Center for Biological Diversity, hundreds of thousands of seabirds ingest plastic every year. One study published in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences indicated that 60 percent of species reported in the scientific literature between and had ingested plastic at some point, and on average, 29 percent of these were found to have plastic in their guts.
Furthermore, the researchers predicted that by , 99 percent of all seabird species will be ingesting plastic. Another study published in the journal Scientific Reports , found that an estimated half of all sea turtles around the world have ingested plastic. But aside from its impact on individual animals, plastic can also have more widespread effects on ecosystems.
Plastic can also be a vector for disease among corals," Mendenhall said. Previous research has also shown that plastic can transport invasive species across oceans. Meanwhile, plastic ingestion on a large scale could impact nutrient flows within the ocean—"for example, feces with plastic in it may be more likely to float, thereby preventing the flow of nutrients deeper," she said.
One of the major concerns surrounding plastic in the ocean is that it can absorb toxic substances from the water—such as dichlorodiphenyltrichloroethane DDT and polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons.
Because larger marine predators will eat many smaller creatures—all of which have consumed plastics—these substances can accumulate as you move up the food chain, leading to higher concentrations in larger animals—including humans, Richard Alan Gross, from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, told Newsweek. The plastics themselves can also potentially release substances called plastisizers after ingestion, according to Rolsky.
These chemical additives—many of which have been linked to cancer in animals—are used in the production of plastics. We know that smaller marine creatures, such as plankton and mussels, often consume tiny fragments of plastic—known as microplastics—which are almost undetectable, measuring less than 5 millimeters across according to the most recognized definition.
However, more research is needed to understand the impact of consuming microplastics on the behavior and physiology of marine animals, as well as the potential health risks further up the food chain for humans who eat seafood. Nevertheless, our lack of knowledge in this area should not imply that these substances are not harmful to humans. Long-lived species with thick layers of fat, such as turtles, can contain dangerous levels of lipid-soluble contaminants. Rolf Halden, a colleague of Rolsky's at Arizona State, also noted that microplastics may pose other health risks.
Autopsies have shown the presence of plastic particulate in cancer victims. This does not imply that the plastics caused the cancer, but it behooves us to study the impact of now unavoidable plastic pollution on both our physiology and life expectancy.
Research in this area is still in its infancy. There are two main sources of microplastics. Primary microplastics are those which are smaller than 5 millimeters in size when they are manufactured. These can take the form of nurdles—small pellets of raw plastic resin which form the basis of nearly all the plastic items in our lives—microfibers in clothes and microbeads used in cosmetic products. Secondary microplastics, on the other hand, occur as larger pieces of plastic degrade in the environment—due to the effects of sunlight and physical abrasion—fragmenting into progressively smaller pieces.
Microplastics are pervasive in the marine environment. While they are hard to track due to their tiny size, one study published in the journal Environmental Research Letters , suggested that the accumulated number of microplastic particles in the ocean could be anywhere between 15 and 15 trillion.
The majority of plastic waste and microplastics in the oceans—around 80 percent—originates from land, where it is discharged into the sea via rivers. A big part of the problem is inadequate waste management, according to Gross.
The other 20 percent of plastic debris enters marine ecosystems via nautical activities, including recreational pursuits—for example, motor boats, sailing, plastics left on beaches—fishing and aqua-farming. We don't know much about what proportions of plastic are found on the sea surface or near-surface, in beach sediments and on the seafloor.
However, what is clear is that plastic waste can be transported far and wide by currents and weather patterns, making its way to even the most remote locations on the planet, such as the bottom of the ocean and the Arctic circle. Plastic also accumulates in the Earth's major ocean gyres—huge systems of rotating ocean currents. One of the five main subtropical gyres is now so heavily polluted it has been named the Great Pacific Garbage Patch—a vast region of plastic debris located between Hawaii and California.
Some estimates suggest it could be twice as big as France, or perhaps even larger. However, its size is difficult to measure, partly because much of it is thought to be made up of microplastics.
Aside from the environmental concerns, plastic waste in the ocean also has significant economic implications. It is thought that plastic pollution costs the global economy millions every year when factoring in the cost of beach clean-ups, tourism losses and damages to fishing and aquaculture industries.
With global plastic production predicted to quadruple by , the amount of waste in the oceans is only expected to rise. So what can be done to tackle the plastic crisis? The plastics industry benefits from disposability, planned obsolescence, and other product characteristics that keep customers buying. She continued: "Consumers do drive the choices made by producers, but only to an extent. It is currently impossible to shop at a typical American grocery store without buying a lot of disposable plastic, even if you wanted to.
It is my opinion that government regulations with regard to product design are a critical part of the solution. But to avoid the plastics industry simply shifting their more harmful product lines to other world markets, these regulations need to serve as an international model for other countries. Rolsky recommends tackling single-use plastics—especially those intended for packaging—which he says are a major contributor to the plastic pollution epidemic.
Often times recycled plastics are turned into items of lesser value—i. The landfill is not the end all be all as studies have also shown landfills to leach both macro- and microplastics into the surrounding environment," he said.
Halden added: "Given the knowledge we have, we have to change our emotional reaction to plastics, particularly packaging plastics. They are not materials of convenience and necessity, they are failed materials that we should ban from our life and from mass production in order to improve both ecological and human health. Covering Climate Now is a global journalism initiative committed to bringing more and better coverage to the defining story of our time.
From September , Newsweek is one of several outlets committed to emphasizing climate stories. The goal is to maximize coverage of the climate crisis and its impacts in the lead up to the United Nations Climate Summit on September Follow the coverage on social media, with the hashtag coveringclimatenow. Weekly magazine, delivered Daily Newsletter Website access.
Even the Deepest Parts of the Ocean Are Polluted With Startling Amounts of Plastic
These distressing photos reveal the devastating impact of the plastic crisis that is blighting the planet's oceans. The images, which have been taken by photographers around the world, show everything from turtles trapped in fishing nets to dead whales with their bellies full of debris. Every year, humanity produces around million tons of plastic, with about eight million tons of the material entering the world's oceans—according to the United Nations Environmental Program. This flow of debris severely impacts the ocean environment and marine life. Plastic pieces are frequently ingested by a wide range of animals—either directly, by mistaking it for food, or indirectly through the consumption of prey.
Jump to navigation. Over the last several decades, human activities have so altered the basic chemistry of the seas that they are now experiencing evolution in reverse: a return to the barren primeval waters of hundreds of millions of years ago. A visitor to the oceans at the dawn of time would have found an underwater world that was mostly lifeless. Eventually, around 3. This microbial soup of algae and bacteria needed little oxygen to survive.
The Devolution of the Seas
Seafood is any form of sea life regarded as food by humans, prominently including fish and shellfish. Shellfish include various species of molluscs e. Historically, marine mammals such as cetaceans whales and dolphins as well as seals have been eaten as food, though that happens to a lesser extent in modern times. Edible sea plants such as some seaweeds and microalgae are widely eaten as sea vegetables around the world, especially in Asia. In the United States, although not generally in the United Kingdom, the term "seafood" is extended to fresh water organisms eaten by humans, so all edible aquatic life may be referred to as "seafood". The harvesting of wild seafood is usually known as fishing or hunting , while the cultivation and farming of seafood is known as aquaculture or fish farming in the case of fish. Seafood is often colloquially distinguished from meat , although it is still animal in nature and is excluded from a vegetarian diet, as decided by groups like the Vegetarian Society after confusion surrounding pescetarianism. Seafood is an important source of animal protein in many diets around the world, especially in coastal areas. Most of the seafood harvest is consumed by humans, but a significant proportion is used as fish food to farm other fish or rear farm animals. Some seafoods i.
The state of our oceans – The damaging effects of ocean pollution
Petroleum contamination is a growing environmental concern that harms both terrestrial and aquatic ecosystems. However, the public and regulatory and scientific communities have given more attention to the contamination of marine habitats. This is because marine oil spills can have a serious economic impact on coastal activities, as well as on those who exploit the resources of the sea. Thus, communities that are at risk of oil disasters must anticipate the consequences and prepare for them.
Impact of Oil Spills on Marine Life
Nurdles are small plastic pellets about the size of a lentil. Countless billion are used each year to make nearly all our plastic products but many end up washing up on our shores. Like other plastics, nurdles can be mistaken for food by marine wildlife like seabirds, fish, and crustaceans.
Tool-use research has focused primarily on land-based animals, with less consideration given to aquatic animals and the environmental challenges and conditions they face. Here, we review aquatic tool use and examine the contributing ecological, physiological, cognitive and social factors. Tool use among aquatic animals is rare but taxonomically diverse, occurring in fish, cephalopods, mammals, crabs, urchins and possibly gastropods. While additional research is required, the scarcity of tool use can likely be attributable to the characteristics of aquatic habitats, which are generally not conducive to tool use. Nonetheless, studying tool use by aquatic animals provides insights into the conditions that promote and inhibit tool-use behaviour across biomes. Like land-based tool users, aquatic animals tend to find tools on the substrate and use tools during foraging.
The growing presence of toxic chemicals in the marine environment presents a crisis unlike any ever faced on this planet. Vast quantities of toxic chemicals enter the waterways and oceans of the world each day and accumulate then bio-magnify in the marine food chain. In a time when we have reduced the number of large pelagic fish by ninety percent and the bio-mass of the oceans by seventy percent, we are poisoning much of the living marine resources that remain. This has staggering global implications for ocean life and human health. A level of ppm of mercury has been found in a bottlenose dolphin killed for food in Japan — a level more than times that accepted by Japanese health authorities.
The principal star of the handbook is the California gray whale which in recent years has become a major tourist attraction in southern California. Notwithstanding the extreme interest, no concise interpretation of the migration has been prepared. Although there is a tremendous number of technical and popular writings about whales, there is still great mystery about them.
Our oceans are a marvel — alive with color, noise, drama, curious life forms, and fascinating creatures — and that is just what we know about today! Every day, scientists learn more about the wonders beneath the waves. From space, our planet Earth shines blue amidst the infinite blackness. The oceans are responsible for making conditions on Earth suitable for us to live on it.
Forage fish , also called prey fish or bait fish , are small pelagic fish which are preyed on by larger predators for food. Predators include other larger fish, seabirds and marine mammals. Typical ocean forage fish feed near the base of the food chain on plankton , often by filter feeding. They include particularly fishes of the family Clupeidae herrings , sardines , shad , hilsa , menhaden , anchovies , and sprats , but also other small fish, including halfbeaks , silversides , smelt such as capelin and goldband fusiliers.
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Никому не показалось удивительным, что два дня спустя АНБ приняло Грега Хейла на работу. Стратмор решил, что лучше взять его к себе и заставить трудиться на благо АНБ, чем позволить противодействовать агентству извне. Стратмор мужественно перенес разразившийся скандал, горячо защищая свои действия перед конгрессом.
Он утверждал, что стремление граждан к неприкосновенности частной переписки обернется для Америки большими неприятностями.
Он действительно это сделал. - Да. Создатель последнего шифра, который никто никогда не взломает. Сьюзан долго молчала. - Но… это значит… Стратмор посмотрел ей прямо в глаза: - Да.
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