According to a new report, marine life could recover their populations by 2050, if drastic action is taken. The report found that even with all of the damage humanity has caused life in the ocean, it is resilient and can make a comeback.
Warming oceans due to climate change, acidic ocean water from pollution, overfishing across the globe, over 8 million metric tons of plastic each year, and much more are just some of the things our society does to impact marine life.
However, it is not too late to start treating our oceans and it’s residents better.
Marine Life Is Sensitive To Change
Without a doubt, even the smallest changes can have a huge impact on the behavior of fish and other sea mammals.
One of the most well known are temperature changes, and with the oceans warming at an alarming rate, we have seen some huge shifts. There are a lot of reports documenting the effects warming oceans have on fish as a whole.
However, most of these fish are an important food source for larger creatures. Thus, when they move to cooler water, it upsets the food chain in the area.
The best example is the damage to the great barrier reef. These reefs provide shelter and food to millions of fish and they are on the path to extinction. Once they are gone, it will affect everyone.
What Does the Report Call For
The report identifies that we currently have the knowledge and technology to protect our oceans.
First, we need to mitigate the effects of climate change. Most fish cannot survive in warmer water and eventually, it will be too much. Nations need to do more to curb carbon emissions.
Fish provide food to over a billion people around the world. And as such, they are constantly sought after. However, overfishing has become a rampant problem that is likely to drive our most common food sources extinct. Stricter fishing regulations must be put into place.
Humanity has a terrible habit of throwing garbage into the ocean. And it has really gotten out of hand. In fact, we have an island that is larger than France that is comprised entirely out of plastic garbage known as the Great Pacific Garbage Patch.
This can be easily remedied by recycling plastics.
We know what’s wrong and how to fix it. Now it is time to act.