Environmental Studies Paper on Oceanic and Coastal Resources
Oceans act as the largest ecosystem globally since they are the world’s most important life support mechanism. Therefore, to survive, there is an urge for a clean and healthy ocean because this biome produces half of the oxygen inhaled by all living creatures. As such, numerous resources can be found in the sea biota including oceanic energy, mineral stocks, estuaries, coral reefs, the rocky shores, kelp forest, the sea grass beds, and the mangrove forest (Halpern et al. 5). Thus, this paper elaborates on the marine resources, their importance, and the impact of human settlement on this ecosystem.
Importance of Marine Resources
Major maritime and coastal resources include fisheries, mineral deposits, marine mammals, and mangroves that are of importance to ecology. Consequently, most of these resources are consumed directly by humans including fish; that is, they act as a source of food to the economy. Significantly, mangrove aids in water purification, carbon sequestration, and breeding grounds for aquatic lives. Moreover, marine ecosystem is significant in scientific research and education purposes (Halpern et al. 3). Besides, marine ecology is vital in water transport as it facilitates trade across countries
Human Impact to Oceanic Resources
Notably, increased water transport has caused oil spillage in the oceans encouraging eutrophication. Expansion of the tourism industry has enhanced growth of hotels near the ecosystem leading to pollution through discharge of untreated effluents. Similarly, rise in population has increased encroachment of mangrove biome to provide space for settlement affecting aquatic habitats. Moreover, unregulated fishing has caused the extinction of various fish species and reduced breeding (Halpern et al. 1).
Human activities such as intense fishing have led to a reduction in the number of fish species. Similarly, oil spillage from industries and water vessels has degraded sustainability of aquatic life as it deters efficient air circulation. Therefore, there is need to protect the ecosystem to prevent the extinction of various marine lives through encouraging sustainability.
Halpern, Benjamin S., et al. “Spatial and temporal changes in cumulative human impacts on the world/’s ocean.” Nature communications 6 (2015).