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The world's oceans, Should Ocean Protected Areas Exist - Essay Example

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Overexploitations of marine resources and overfishing have necessitated the need for ocean protected areas. This paper seeks to explore whether marine protected areas are essential and in doing so the paper also deals with the potential risks and benefits associated with the implementation of MPAs …
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The worlds oceans, Should Ocean Protected Areas Exist
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Overexploitations of marine resources and overfishing have necessitated the need for ocean protected areas. Today marine protected areas have been proved to be essential for restoring fisheries, promoting marine biodiversity and increasing marine productivity in the oceans. Even though marine resources play a pivotal role in the economic development of the nation scientific studies reveal that “many of our marine resources are overexploited and face external environmental threats” (Sanchirico, Cochran & Emerson 1). Such overexploitation or overfishing adversely affect fragile ocean habitats, damage ocean ecosystems, cause disturbances in food chains and result in the loss of unique marine life communities. Marine resources are so much important for the humans as “97 % of all the water on the Earth is in the oceans” (Yang) and because “71% of Earth’s surface” (Woods Hole Oceanographic) is covered by oceans. Stabilizing climate temperatures, exchanging of climate gases, and increasing biodiversity are parts of benefits that the ocean yields us. Similarly, ocean produces half of the oxygen that the humans breathe and offers a great environmental condition that keeps organisms alive and growing. As Langreth has rightly pointed out ocean offers shelter to an estimated “five million species, most of which have not yet been classified” (Langreth). However, man’s indiscriminate actions such as dumping waste materials, oils, overfishing, and noise pollutions pose great threat to the marine life in oceans. Therefore, it is imperative that man protects and conserves marine life through such radical measures as the marine protected areas.
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Certain species such as bluefin tuna have already been destroyed or disappeared from the ocean. While overfishing has led to the disappearance of tens of thousands of bluefin tuna across the seas of Northern Europe in the 1930s and 1940s it has contributed to the vanishing of Halibut from the North Atlantic during the 19th century (Overfished and under-protected: Oceans on the brink of catastrophic collapse). Similarly, trawling towards is one of the methods for fishing and it is really harmful to the ocean. Bottom-trawling which involves dropping a large net, “around 60 meters-wide into the sea and dragging it along with heavy weights from a trawler cause ‘worst and unnecessary damage’ to many species of fishes” (Overfished and under-protected: Oceans on the brink of catastrophic collapse). Marine pollution is another major harm done by the humans to the ocean. Mostly, man’s indiscriminate dumping of such harmful materials into the sea as pesticides, herbicides, chemical fertilizers, detergents, oil, sewage, plastics, and other solids result in massive marine pollution. These have caused around 400 dead zones around the world and these harmful materials “rob the water of oxygen, leaving areas where little or no marine life can exist” (Marine Pollution). In addition, noise pollution such as sound waves from the cargo ships also kills a lot of organism in the ocean. It has been identified that the presence of loud or persistent sounds from ships, sonar devices, oil rigs, and even from natural sources like earthquakes can “disrupt the migration, communication, hunting, and reproduction patterns of many marine animals, particularly aquatic mammals like whales and dolphins” (Marine Pollution). Marine protection is possible only through competent and ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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