As man continues to plunder our oceans without much thought, the biodiversity of the seas is diminishing at an alarming rate. Little is known about our oceans and just like the human mind, the oceans are largely unexplored.
We know more about the moon than we do about our own oceans.
The ocean is our planets largest carbon sink. As the ocean absorbs more and more carbon, the acidity of the sea rises. This process is known as ocean acidification and it is said to be responsible for the destruction of coral reefs.
New species are being discovered everyday, but there is no way of finding out how the numbers of these creatures has been affected by mans activities over the past century.
Overfishing, warming waters, ocean acidification and pollution are all terms we are becoming more aware of as it slowly dawns on us that our oceans may not be the mysterious and resilient habitats we have often considered them.
As recently as 1998 the oceans heated so dramatically that a quarter of the world’s corals died – including between 70-90% of those in the Indian Ocean. If the same event had been witnessed on land to our forests – considered the land-based counterpart of the coral reefs – urgent information and action would be demanded to find out what had happened.
It is only within the last decade that we have really begun to understand the role and the fragility of our oceans, recognising our impact on them, and what this could mean for our well-being. In his most definitive work, ‘Ocean of Life’ the new book by professor Callum Roberts – professor of marine conservation at the University of York – makes a bold claim: “The oceans are changing faster than at almost any time in the Earth’s history and we are the agents of that transformation.”