4 Ways To Save Our Oceans This Earth Day
Start writing a post

4 Ways To Save Our Oceans This Earth Day

We've found Nemo, now what can we do to help him?

4 Ways To Save Our Oceans This Earth Day

Earth Day is April 22 and I'm totally bummed that I'll probably be working on final projects instead of spending time in nature.

Okay, that's a lie, I generally don't like being outside. The bugs and the dirt and the lack of vinyl records or books just don't sit well with me.

But there's an exception, and it's being on the water. An ocean is preferred, but I'll take a nice lake, spring, or river. I've always been fascinated by water. I love the fact that it's so serene from a distance, but houses this whole other, sometimes super-mysterious community of beings. Seals and sea lions are my favorites, but I find all aquatic life fascinating.

So it makes me super-sad to see all the destruction humans wreak on the ocean and other waterways. It's impossible for any one person to save the ocean single-handedly, but we can all do our part to help one of the earth's most complex and beautiful ecosystems. Here are four tips to get you started.

1. Cut Back On Plastic

I'm sure you've heard this one before, as have I, and I'm honestly not the best at it. But when I hear about islands of plastic in the ocean and plastic-filled whale carcasses I start kicking myself for all the times I've forgotten to bring my reusable bags to Publix or all the Vitamin Waters I consume. Next time I have some extra money (which, as a grad student with a Disney pass, is never), I plan on getting a water bottle from Sand Cloud. It's cute enough that I won't mind carrying it everywhere, and the big mouth looks like it'll make for easy-cleaning (I feel like I can never get a S'Well bottle clean enough since I can't get a sponge in). They donate a portion of their proceeds to marine conservation organizations, so it's a win-win.

2. Cut Seafood Out Of Your Diet (Or Buy More Sustainably)

Okay, honestly, I have a hard time wrapping my head around pescatarianism. I'm totally biased as a long-time vegetarian, one that gave up fish first at that (and it's generally the meat product I miss the least. Okay, fine I sort of miss shrimp.) It feels like pescatarians try to align themselves with vegetarianism, but none of the common reasons for be a vegetarian really translate. I don't get being a pescatarian for ethical reasons when a single cow can provide so many more meals than one fish. I don't get it for health reasons when so many types are high in mercury. I don't get it for environmental reasons when aquafarming and over-fishing have caused so much ecological damage (the fate of the adorable vaquita porpoise is super-upsetting). And obviously, I don't get pescatarianism from a taste standpoint (except that CONFESSION TIME: Total Wine was giving out free samples of Bloody Mary's the other day and I totally took one despite the Worcestershire sauce in it and it was incredible).

Anyway, if you are a seafood lover, read up on seafood sustainability and, when financially/logistically possible, make educated shopping choices. The Monterey Bay Aquarium (the inspiration for the rescue center in "Finding Dory") has a great guide. And don't worry, I won't make you try some veggie fish alternative, because most of them are WEIRD.

3. Consider What You Put In Your Aquarium

Tropical fish found in pet stores are often captured in unsustainable ways, including applying cyanide onto already-fraught coral reefs. Aquariums are a beautiful addition to a home, can allow for a lot of creativity, and if you have children in your life it can be a great way to instill a love in aquatic life in them. For the Fishes has an app that will help you buy the right fishy friends. And, please, don't dump unwanted pet fish in local waterways. If a species isn't suited for that environment, it's bad news for the fish. If they thrive in that non-native environment, it's bad for everyone else.

4. Clean Up A Local Waterway

If you live somewhere that's warm year-round and close to the beach (looking at you, fellow Floridians), then attending a beach clean-up (or just picking up some trash when you're at the beach already) should be fairly easy and fun. If I weren't writing this article, I'd totally be out cleaning up a beach doing other homework watching Netflix and crying about homework.

If you're, say, in the Northeast, you may want to wait a month (but unless you can train/bus it, don't go on Memorial Day weekend, because traffic causes air pollution, and you don't want to be a part of that more than you need to). Not near the coast? Lakes and rivers need love, too.

Well, if your takeaway from this article is that I'm not some perfect environmentalist, that's totally valid. It's near impossible to not leave any footprint; in the first place, more things are made from or coated in plastic than we even realize. Some ocean-saving measures take more time or money than we may have to give. But we can all take small actions for healthier oceans - on Earth Day, World Oceans Day (June 8) and every day.

Report this Content
This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.

13 Signs You Are A True Cancer Of The Zodiac

Calling all babies born June 21st - July 22nd!

My Astral Life

I'm the first to admit that I am one of THOSE people who uses their zodiac sign as a description of themselves. I realize not everyone believes in astrology-related anything, and there are plenty of people who don't fit their signs. However, I'm one of the people who truly fits their sign to a tee. I'm a Cancer, a Crab, a Moon Child. It's currently our season fellow Crabs! So without further ado, here are all of the signs that you're a Cancer.

Keep Reading... Show less

The Blessing of Lacking Sex Appeal

To all the fellow non "it" girls out there


Lacking sex appeal is not a desirable thing. It makes you fee not ugly, but wrong. Not having charisma is not a life goal. It doesn't make you fee friendless, but isolated. Not being the "it" girl happens, and tonight (and every nigh prior to this)

Keep Reading... Show less

Confessions From the Single Friend of the Group

It is truly the worst place to be

Confessions From the Single Friend of the Group

Look. If you are anything like me, complaining about being single is such a hard thing to because you are genuinely happy for your friends, but as they continue to be happy in their relationships, the ever crushing weight of being the single friends can become overwhelming. For context, my primary friend group consists of four people. We are all roommates and it is a great time here. All three of my roommates have boyfriends/girlfriends, which makes our friend group of four quickly jump to seven, and it is wonderful! I love my roommates so much and I love their S.O's, but no matter how much I love them I always get extremely jealous and sad. The sad thing is that the only part that ever truly ends up bugging me is that since I am single, they are my go-to top priorities and it has been really hard to watch myself slip from the top of their go-to's to not being their go to when they feel the weight of the world. What makes it harder is that expressing that I feel alone and unwanted makes me sound jealous and like I don't want my friends to hangout with their people. I get it. I do. But there are just days I want to be someone's first pick and I'm not.

Keep Reading... Show less

Aretha Franklin Will Forever Be A Detroit Legend, I'm Proud To Share A Hometown With Her

Aretha Franklin lost her battle to pancreatic cancer, so we stop to reflect on her powerful journey.

Aretha Franklin Will Forever Be A Detroit Legend, I'm Proud To Share A Hometown With Her

Recently, Aretha Franklin, the Queen of Soul, passed away. Ms. Franklin grew up singing in her church's choir in Detroit. Over the years, she decided to make singing a career, first signing to Columbia Records at 18. Years later, she signed with Atlantic Records where her most powerful tunes, such as "Respect," are remembered to this day. Her breathtaking vocals earned her 18 Grammy Awards and made her one of the best-selling artists of all time.

Keep Reading... Show less

Life Before Emancipation

Contraband Camps in Harpers Ferry


When the Civil War first broke out, the United States Army sought to preserve the Union, and did not have intentions on interfering with the institution of slavery in the rebellious states. In fact, in his first inaugural address, Abraham Lincoln promised not to interfere with slavery in the places where it already existed. Of course, at the time of this address, Virginia, North Carolina, Arkansas, and Tennessee had yet to secede, so he needed to keep a moderate stance. When the U.S. Army moved into states in rebellion, generals ensured civilians that they would not interfere with slavery, and would even hep quell potential uprisings. On May 22, 1861, this attitude towards slavery began to change. Prior to then, slaves who escaped into Union lines could be returned to their masters. In some cases, troops with more abolitionist leanings would aid the runaways, but it was not yet the norm. However on May 22, three runaway slaves approached Fort Monroe along the James River seeking refuge. The slaves stated that they were about to be sent South to work on the Confederate coastal defenses in the Carolinas. Instead of returning the slaves to their masters, the commander of the fort, Benjamin Butler, claimed the slaves were contraband of war and put them to work in support of the United States. He wrote Winfield Scott, general-in-chief of all federal armies, "Shall [the enemy] be allowed the use of this property against the United States and we not be allowed its use in aid of the United States?" Following Butler's actions, 900 more slaves would gather in Fort Monroe. Congress would back Butler's stance with the First Confiscation Act in August of 1861.

Keep Reading... Show less

Subscribe to Our Newsletter

Facebook Comments