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Science Reporter Summary June 2018 Siva Prasad
About Me . Bachelors and Masters in Physics from Indian Institute of Science (ISc), Bangalore .INSPIRE Scholar, DST Govt. of India Interested in Physics, current affairs, economics.... . Physicist, Blogger, Teacher.... Wrote UPSC CSE Mains 2017 Research Publication in Journal of Applied Physics
Siva Prasad VERIFIED Edit Profile Student at Indian Institute of Science(iSc), Bangalore; UPSC Mains 17 INSPIRE Scholar; Blogger, physicist; Autodidact: Telegram-akmsra 29,307 Views in last 30 days 229,035 Lifetime Views 28 Courses 5.4k Fo 16 Follown Pradhan Mantri Kisan SAMPADA Yojana UNACADEMY PLUS By Siva Prasad By Siva Prasad Complete Course on Science & Technology O Last date to apply is 28th July Choosing Optional Subject: Public Administration Government Schemes For UPSC Prelims 2018 17 Lessons 615 Lessons View Details 5 ratings 2 revie 9 ratings-14 review NDIA UNDER THE ENGLISH EAST INHA INDIA FEATURES AND TIHEIR
Plastics in the Ocean
Plastics in marine Ecosystem Plastic in marine ecosystems is one of the biggest environmental challenges we face today .An environmental issue that has affected every country in the world, even the remotest shores uninhabited by humans
Plastics in marine Ecosystem . Plastic not only looks unsightly ruining the aesthetics, it maims and kills marine life, and poses a serious threat to entire population of many marine species. It also poses a health risk to humans. .Scientists have warned that there will be more plastic than fish in the ocean by 2050 unless a concerted effort is made to reduce our dependence on single-use plastic items such as plastic bottles and plastic bags.
Sources of plastic in marine ecosystem 2 sources land based sources and ocean based sources . Land-based sources, including litter left behind by beachgoers and plastic that is washed into the ocean via rivers or blown in from the land, accounts for 80 % of the total volume of marine debris found in our oceans. .Ocean-based sources, including garbage dumped at sea by oceangoing vessels and fishing debris for example, fishing line, fishing nets, bait box strapping and other discarded fishing gear-accounts for 20% of marine debris polluting our oceans
Why plastics are popular . The use of plastics to manufacture goods has dramatically risen largely because it is cheap, durable, and therefore longlasting (a trait which unfortunately leads to it persisting in the environment) . According to the marine plastic awareness group, "Plastic Ocean", every year the world produces 300 million tonnes of plastic, half of which is used to manufacture disposable single-use items. . Consequently, every year over'8 million tonnes of plastic is added to the ever-growing scourge of plastic accumulating in the ocean from years before. Once this plastic ends up in the ocean it doesn't simply go away.
The Scourge of plastics . Around 90% of all marine debris is composed of plastics and Styrofoam (polystyrene foam), with food and beverage packaging being one of the most widespread items commonly found during coastal surveys of beaches around the world Because of its lightweight characteristics, it is readily blown into rivers or directly into the ocean. While only making up a relatively small percentage of the total amount of plastic in the ocean, discarded fishing gear is highly destructive.
The Scourge of plastics . Abandoned fishing nets drift about endlessly in the ocean, effectively 'ghost fishing' -indiscriminately trapping marine organisms that haplessly swim into them. . Discarded fishing line can entangle birds, turtles and other marine life while larger marine animals such as seals are vulnerable to being 'noosed' by bait box strapping that has been slipped off bait boxes rather than cut off.
Microplastics .Tiny microplastics are washed down the drain, making their way to wastewater treatment plants. But because wastewater treatment facilities do not have filters fine enough to remove these micro-particles, they are discharged into rivers with the treated effluent, eventually making their way to the ocean Sources of microplastics include tyre dust; paints, including road paint, building paint and marine paint; and accidental spills of microplastic pellets that are used to manufacture plastic products
Financial losses due to plastics in waters . The financial loss is estimated to be in the region of $13 billion annually, resulting from the negative impact that plastic debris has on marine ecosystems, the economic losses suffered by the tourism and fishing sectors, and the financial cost associated with coastal cleanups.
Marine life affected by Plastics . Plastic pellets and Styrofoam beads are not readily digested, they accumulate within the digestive tracts of marine organisms that ingest them, causing the animal to feel satiated As a result, the animal stops foraging for food and becomes more and more emaciated before eventually dying of starvation. The accumulation of plastic in the gut can also block the digestive system, resulting in the animal's death even if it is getting enough food to eat. . When predators higher up the food chain feed on an organism that has a digestive tract filled with bits of plastic and styrofoam, these undigested plastics are ingested by the predator, which also struggles to digest it.
Marine life affected by Plastics Persistent organic pollutants such as DT and PCBs -both harmful endocrine disrupters -can accumulate on the surface of plastics at concentrations that are hundreds of thousands or even a million times higher than concentrations naturally occurring in seawater. . These pollutants are stored in the fatty tissue and organs of the body and get passed on up the food chain, becoming more and more concentrated in animals at the top of the marine food webs -> Biomagnification Consequently, the ocean's apex predators become more and more contaminated over the course of their lifetime as they continue to prey on contaminated organisms.