Whether you enjoy dipping into the ocean or not, it always plays an essential role in the existence of the human and other species. From climate regulation, seafood provision to transportation and recreational activities, it’s hard to imagine a world without the ocean. Therefore, keeping a stable marine life completely makes sense.
Since it is the downstream of everything, all of our actions and activities, no matter where we are living, might affect the marine life and ocean. Although those people who live on the coastline can have the most significant effect on the marine life, there are many things that you can do to help the ocean, even when you live far inland.
1. Limit single-use and disposable plastics
It is estimated that the ocean will have more plastics than fish by 2050, which might be a disaster for both the marine life and human society. Plastic would stay around for a few hundred years and leach many dangerous toxins into the environment. This can be a hazard to the wildlife and human health, which might result in habitat destruction, hormone disruption, ingestion, and entanglement.
The key to stopping this global issue is obviously saying no to single-use plastics such as water bottles, coffee cups, plastic cutlery, and straws. Purchase items with less packaging, do not use disposable products and reuse bags if possible.
2. Consume eco-friendly seafood
Our selection of foods might have a considerable effect on the marine life - from the items we consume to the method they are grown, harvested, and delivered. Being a vegan might be better for the ocean, but you can make some small changes by choosing eco-friendly and local food. If you consume seafood, for example, eat species which are harvested in a sustainable method. This means eating fishes that have a stable population and supporting whose harvest reduce the impacts and minimizes by-catch.
3. Stop the ocean acidification
Ocean acidification is one of the major causes of global warming. Since the acidity in the oceans goes up, it might have devastating effects on the marine life, including shellfish, corals, plankton, and other species which eat them.
To deal with this issue and reduce the global warming, you should take some simple steps which would likely to save money in the long term, including driving less, walking more, using less water and electricity. In other words, lowering the carbon footprint will be a good way to help the marine life far away from your home. An acidic ocean seems to be a scary idea, but we would bring the ocean to a better state with some small yet effective changes in our lifestyle and behavior.
4. Be energy-efficient
Another effective way to say the ocean and marine life is to reduce your consumption of water and energy as well as carbon output if possible. This might include simple tasks such as turning the TV or lights off when you are not in the room or driving your car with fuel efficiency. It seems to be strange, but by being energy-efficient, you can help the Arctic fish and marine mammals since the less energy you consume, the less the climate might heat up. As a result, the ice will not melt.
5. Join in an ocean cleanup
Trash in the coastline or ocean might be hazardous and dangerous to marine life and our health too! Therefore, you should help clean up and pick up the trash in the local roadway, park, or beach before they get into the ocean. Even garbage thousands of kilometers from the shore can eventually blow or float into the ocean. You can contact the local coastal zone management department or office to see whether they organize an ocean cleanup.
6. Do not release balloons
Balloons seem to be pretty when you are releasing them, but these small items are extremely dangerous to marine species such as sea turtles, which might mistake for food and accidentally swallow them. After a party, therefore, you should pop and throw all of the balloons into the trash rather than releasing them.
7. Be responsible for viewing the marine life
If you are planning to view the marine life, make sure to do it responsibly. For example, go tide pooling to watch marine species from the shore. Take gradual steps to have a dolphin watch, diving excursions or other trips with an experienced operator. Consider carefully about "swimming with dolphins" tours, which might not be good for them and would even be harmful to you.
8. Work or volunteer with the marine life
Perhaps you have already worked with marine life or are trying to become an experienced marine biologist. In case this isn’t your career path, consider a volunteer position. If you are living near the coast, it is quite simple to find a volunteer opportunity on learning giant clams, wetlands, sea turtles, and protecting them from dangerous elements.
9. Purchase ocean-friendly gifts
It’s great to give your friends or kids a gift which will help with the marine life. Honorary donations and memberships to NGOs that protect the marine life and ocean can be a perfect gift. How about a gift ticket for a snorkeling trip or whale watch or a basket of eco-friendly cleaning products? Make sure to be creative when wrapping your gift and use reused materials such as a dish towel, beach towel, gift bag or basket.
10. Be responsible for disposing of fishing lines
It takes approximately 600 years for monofilament fishing lines to degrade. If you left them the ocean, it might give an entangling web which threatens marine species. For this reason, do not dispose of your fishing lines in the ocean. Instead, throw them responsibly in the garbage or recycle them if you can.