The Changing Policy Landscape of Ocean Dumping
The dumping of waste in the ocean has been a controversial issue for a long time, with different stakeholders having varying opinions on the matter. While some believe that it is an effective way to get rid of waste, others assert that it is a form of pollution that needs to be stopped. Over the years, various policies have been put in place in an attempt to control ocean dumping, with varying degrees of success. In this essay, I will discuss the changing policy landscape with regard to ocean dumping and the various factors that have fuelled this change.
2. What is ocean dumping?
Ocean dumping refers to the act of disposing of waste in the ocean. This can be done deliberately or accidentally, and the waste can be in solid, liquid, or gaseous form. Ocean dumping is a contentious issue because it can have a negative impact on the environment and human health. For instance, when toxic chemicals are dumped in the ocean, they can bioaccumulate in marine life and eventually end up in the food chain, where they can cause health problems in humans. Furthermore, ocean dumping can also lead to the formation of marine debris islands, which can damage coastal ecosystems. As such, there is a growing calls for a reduction in ocean dumping and for policies to be put in place to control it.
3. The value of life and water transport
One of the key factors that has fuelled the change in policy with regard to ocean dumping is the increasing value placed on human life and water transport. In the past, ocean dumping was seen as an effective way to get rid of waste because it was out of sight and out of mind. However, as our understanding of the environment has grown, we have come to realize that what happens in the oceans doesn’t stay there – it can have a direct impact on our own health and well-being. This is particularly true for water transport, which is vitally important for both trade and tourism. If the oceans are polluted, it will not only have an impact on marine life but also on humans who rely on water transport for their livelihoods. As such, there is a greater incentive to protect the oceans from pollution and to invest in policies that will control ocean dumping.
4. Pollution of the ocean
Another factor that has contributed to changes in policy with regard to ocean dumping is the growing awareness of the problem of pollution. In particular, there is a greater understanding of how pollution affects not just marine life but also humans who rely on the oceans for their livelihoods. As such, there is a heightened concern about the need to protect the oceans from pollution and to invest in policies that will control ocean dumping. This is particularly true in light of recent estimates which suggest that plastic pollution could increase by orders of magnitude over the next few decades unless action is taken to control it (Collins et al., 2018).
In conclusion, it is clear that there has been a shift in policy with regard to ocean dumping over recent years. This shift has been driven by a number of factors, including the increasing value placed on human life and water transport, as well as a growing awareness of problem of pollution. As such, there is a greater incentive to invest in policies that will control ocean dumping and reduce its impact on the environment and human health.