The ocean has always made me smile. Whether crystal clear & calm, stormy & loud wavy and wild, the ocean speaks to us and it’s language is one we all understand. How closely we listen, is another thing altogether.
As a vital source of life on earth the ocean supplies oxygen, regulates global climate and is home to millions of plant and animal species. 71% of the earth’s surface is covered by the ocean – a pretty large surface of the earth, that definitely needs to be taken care of. The health of the ocean’s ecosystems directly influences our health & that of all other living beings on this planet. When people read about the devastation caused by humans to the ocean and sea life they are outraged – and rightly so.
It’s empowering to know that the choices you make in everyday life influence the wellbeing of the planet. Making ethical & sustainable life choices CAN create a better future. Remember that small changes have big impact if we all make them.
In this article we will show you some ways you can live a “Blue” life and have a positive impact on the health of our oceans. Cause every action you take and every cent you spend is a vote for the kind of world you want.
Plastic pollution in the ocean has taken it’s toll on many birds, sea mammals and other sea life. Reduce plastic in your lifestyle (e.g bags, straws) and you already are supporting a better life above and under the sea.
Plastic is also harmful to your body acting as an endocrine disruptor (due to BPA and other chemicals) which can cause a wide range of ailments. You can read more about endocrine disruptors here.
There are many alternatives to plastic products which are made of glass, wood or other eco-friendly materials. It it seems to overwhelming to ditch plastic all at once, start small by replacing one item first and then replacing more and more consumer goods with non-plastic alternatives.
Choose Fish wisely
If you eat fish choose wisely and buy from companies who practise safe & sustainable fishing. You can find a guide on what to look out for here. However, as with the consumption of any animal product, often less is more. Try and have fish & seafood less often, but enjoy it more when you do have it.
Join Beach Clean-Ups
Litter left on beaches end up in the ocean. Find a local group that organises beach clean-ups and spend some time with friends & family contributing towards cleaner beaches. It’s also a good opportunity to learn more about the ocean from others and pass on what you know. If you see litter on the beach when you’re on your own, take it with you and dispose of it responsibly.
Choose sustainable Farming & Gardening
All fertilisers and pesticides eventually end up in the ocean. Make sure you purchase your food from farmers who avoid harsh chemicals or even decide to grow some of your fruits & veggies yourself. Some plants are known to effectively keep pests at bay – try planting these in your garden instead of using pesticides.
Research what you Buy
Don’t contribute to the demand of products that harm the ocean’s ecosystems – such as coral or products made of turtle shell. There really is no need to purchase items that endanger species.
Be Sun Smart
It’s important to protect your skin when spending time in the sun – but it’s just as important to make sure you are using products that won’t damage reefs or hurt marine life. Choose sun screens that are natural and avoid harsh chemicals that can harm you and the ocean. Make sure you research the products well before you purchase it. Another good way to protect your skin is to wear a rash vest – they are great for protection and you won’t be leaving any chemicals behind.
Reduce your Carbon Footprint
Do all the energy saving you can – less CO2 emissions means less harm to the climate, which reduces the effects of climate change on the ocean. You can find an extensive list of ways to reduce your carbon footprint here.
If you travel by charters or cruises make sure to choose eco-certified organisations. Ensure the company does everything it can so your adventure doesn’t negatively affect marine life. If you can, avoid water vehicles that use fossil fuels and choose more sustainable methods (e.g. sailing).
Also remember to never touch marine life. Firstly, you could injure yourself by encouraging sea life to use it’s defence mechanisms on you – and this can be quite painful. Secondly, you can hurt marine life by accidentally injuring them, removing their anti-bacterial protective layer or causing them to retrieve from their home due to fear & therefore putting them at risk. Enjoy marine life by simply looking.
The ocean is many things to many people and should be enjoyed by all of us in our own way. Let’s make sure that future generations get to experience the ocean’s beauty as well – to a “Blue” life.
Do you have more tips on how to keep our oceans healthy? Please share them with us here!
BLUE MONKEY & PINEAPPLE.