Plastics in Our Oceans
by BBayliff on November 6, 2015 - 8:22pm
The article “Plastics in Our Oceans” by Kimberly Amaral discusses the major impacts of the plastics we use, in our everyday life, on the marine environment. Amaral stresses how essential and convenient plastic is to us, and that we don’t think much of throwing it out. For example, plastic bags that drift in the ocean appear as jellyfish and plastic pellets look like fish eggs thus resulting in fish, birds, and other marine life mistaking the appearance of plastic leading to danger in marine life. Although the ocean comprises of most of the earths total area, it isn’t large enough to to avoid marine life encounters with debris. Due to the excess debris in the oceans, approximately 40,000 seals have been killed per year due to entanglement, starvation, as well as deep wounds caused by the tightening materials. Amaral mentions that marine wildlife is not the only area to suffer from effects of marine debris, plastic bags are the leading external cause of damage to engines on boats. Despite all the negative impacts, plastic industries have been making efforts to help the ongoing issues. These efforts are needed in order to find a way to cut down the 400 years it takes for plastic to biodegrade. Amaral states that the best solution as of late is to clean up the shores of beaches so that the plastic can not re-enter the oceans.
I believe that this is a very important issue that people need to be more aware of and to do so, we must take time out of our day to help control the amount of plastic we are discarding. I personally believe that plastic companies aren’t doing anything near enough to make a difference. I have worked at a plastic bag factory and was stunned to see how much resin and plastic gets wasted on a daily basis. With the proper precautions I believe that we can make a difference.