Ocean Action Hub

Land-based sources (such as agricultural run-off, discharge of nutrients and pesticides and untreated sewage including plastics) account for approximately 80% of marine pollution, globally. Marine habitats worldwide are contaminated with man-made debris. Oil spills remain a concern, though actual spills have decreased steadily for several decades.

Excessive nutrients from sewage outfalls and agricultural runoff have contributed to the increasing incidence of low oxygen (hypoxic) areas known as dead zones, where most marine life cannot survive, resulting in the collapse of some ecosystems. There are now close to 500 dead zones with a total global surface area of over 245,000 km², roughly equivalent to that of the United Kingdom. The excess nitrogen can also stimulate the proliferation of seaweeds and microorganisms and cause algal blooms. Such blooms can be harmful (HABs), causing massive fish kills, contaminating seafood with toxins and altering ecosystems.

Litter can accumulate in huge floating garbage patches or wash up on the coasts. Light, resistant plastics float in the Ocean, releasing contaminants as they break down into micro-particles that animals mistake for food. Fish and birds can choke on these particles, get sick as they accumulate toxins in their stomachs, or become entangled in larger debris.

As the world saw in 2010, the Gulf of Mexico deep-water oil spill had a devastating effect on the entire marine ecosystem, as well as the populations that depend on the marine areas for their livelihoods. Smaller oil spills happen every day, due to drilling incidents or leaking motors, negatively impacting birds, marine mammals, algae, fish and shellfish.

SOURCE: UNESCO website

Latest

29 May 2018 - Straws, plates, cutlery and cotton buds are among the plastic products prohibited under the proposed new rules.

Approved

24 May 2018 - We need to act now to save biodiversity and ecosystems.

Approved

23 May 2018 - In an innovative project, fishermen in Kerala collect ocean plastic for recycling, cleaning the ocean in the process.

Approved
22 May 2018 - Industry being driven by consumers to take action after decades of plastic waste leaking into the seas, damaging environment and health.
Approved
20 May 2018 - Industry being driven by consumers to take action after decades of plastic waste leaking into the seas, damaging environment and health.
Approved

16 May 2018 - The miracle material has made modern life possible. But more than 40 percent of it is used just once, and it’s choking our waterways.

Approved

15 May 2018 - Students, teachers and volunteers will mark the day at Dockweiler State Beach on 24 May.

Official

14 May 2018 - A plastic bag was found at a depth of almost 36,000 feet in the Mariana Trench. Scientists say it’s the world’s deepest known piece of plastic trash.

Approved

11 May 2018 - World Ocean's Day, the annual global event aimed at tackling some of the biggest threats facing our oceans, will take place on June 8, 2018.

Approved

10 May 2018 - I love working for islands, and not just because of their nature, people and weather. Islands are the canaries in the coal mine for how we treat our planet.

Approved
10 May 2018 - The hatchlings swallow plastic, perhaps mistaking it for food, and can’t pass it because their bodies are too tiny.
Approved

9 May 2018 - Innovators are taking marine trash and turning it into treasure.

Approved