5 Reasons To Feel Hopeful About The Oceans In 2019

Over the course of 2018, we have seen how human impacts and global climate change are rapidly altering the world's oceans.

While the war against ocean plastic escalated to new levels this past year, the extent of our plastic problem also became clearer.  For example, plastic was discovered 36,000 feet below sea level in the Marianas Trench, the deepest point in the ocean. Additionally, whales washed up on Thai and Indonesian beaches earlier this year with over a dozen pounds of plastic in their stomachs. And, while there is a highly publicized effort underway to remove some of the ocean plastic, the technology may not be effective and could prove harmful to wildlife.

Quite possibly the most pronounced impact has been multiple record-breaking warming events occurring around the world. San Diego saw its warmest summer temperatures in a century. A combination of warm waters and agricultural pollution caused Florida's worst red tide event in a decade. Nearly half of the Great Barrier Reef is already bleached and a record-breaking heatwave that occurred north of Queensland in November may cause further bleaching in 2019. And, as of this month, 95% the Arctic's oldest ice has already melted away.

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