The range of harm that plastic burdens our marine life with, and how we can take a more sustainable approach.
You may not think of plastic as anything other than a synthetic material used to carry your groceries or serve as packaging. However, what people often fail to acknowledge is plastic’s devastating impact on marine life. Read on to find out more – you may find yourself viewing plastic just a little bit differently.
Plastic is Often Mistaken As Food
Plastic is actually mistaken as food by our marine wildlife, causing them to eat it. Consuming plastic can cause animals to choke, contract internal injuries, or even starve them slowly to death. In wildlife’s bid to survive and protect their young, they unknowingly feed fragments of plastic to themselves and their offspring, filling up their stomachs which leaves no room left for real food. When young animals don’t get the nutrition they require, their chances of survival are slim. To save marine animals and those close to the sea, such as seabirds, we need to act by reducing our usage of plastic materials.
Plastic Can Cause Wildlife Wounds
Plastic pollution in oceans has actually been found to cause physical harm to marine wildlife. Physical wounds and entrapments are the most serious forms of damage. Fish and birds often become entangled in plastic drink rings and plastic bags, triggering agonizing wounds and even strangulation. Animals that live in the sea but still require air to breathe can get so entangled in plastic that they are unable to surface for their much-needed oxygen, causing them to drown. With such devastation spreading across our oceans, we need to act to raise awareness and tackle this worldwide issue.
"By making a positive difference to our planet, you can give customers around the globe a reason to invest in you over unsustainable, harmful organizations."
Plastic Kills Coral Reefs
Plastics have also been discovered to kill coral reefs. The bacteria within plastics can disease the reefs, and they can block oxygen and light from reaching the coral. Since coral reefs are a necessary part of our oceans’ environments and home to countless species, this is a huge problem.
The Harm of Microplastics
Microplastics come from synthetic clothing fibers, cosmetics, and other plastic products, yet they can end up in the sea through runoff, dumping garbage, and the breakdown of larger plastic pieces. The existence of microplastics means that not even zooplankton can escape the consumption of harmful materials, with so many tiny fragments being broken down from just one singular plastic bag. Microplastics can disrupt a variety of marine species by disrupting iron absorption and putting stress on organs.
What Can We Expect in The Future?
In the long run, the impact of plastic on the ocean is concerning. Since plastic does not degrade and has the potential to last forever, it could become deadlier over time. If we don’t take action against the use of plastic, our marine life will continue to deteriorate at a devastating rate.
From assessing this information, the most obvious thing to take away is that plastic could be detrimental to any business model. Companies using large amounts of plastic may put off potential customers from buying their products or services. Therefore, it is crucial to stay away from utilizing too much plastic – especially if it isn’t recyclable.
Secondly, eco-friendlier materials can boost your business. As time goes by, increasing numbers of customers are looking for companies which look after our planet by investing in kinder materials such as bamboo. This could increase business profits.
Finally, by injecting sustainability into your brand and avoiding plastic usage, your company could stand for something more. With a stronger meaning behind your brand, not only will you make it more attractive, but you will also make it more valuable to your target market. By making a positive difference to our planet, you can give customers around the globe a reason to invest in you over unsustainable, harmful organizations.
Therefore, it might be time for businesses around the world to start ditching plastic, as some companies have already started to. With the environment becoming an increasingly concerning problem in this age, businesses need to start stepping up and involving themselves in practices that can work for the betterment of our planet.