The Real Story of World Oceans Day Lies Below the Surface

Emilio Cogliani

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Today, on World Oceans Day, let’s contemplate the state of our seas. Picture yourself perched on your favorite coastal bluff, surveying an endless expanse of blue-green water that stretches beyond the horizon and around the world, covering about three-quarters of the planet’s surface. Now imagine what lies beneath the surface.

Humans have been depleting and polluting the oceans since the beginning of industrial times when we hunted whales nearly to extinction. But as our population soared and our technologies advanced, we’re now doing damage on an unprecedented industrial scale. We’ve withdrawn about 90 percent of the large fish and deposited enough carbon, plastic and other pollutants to dangerously alter the chemistry of oceans that once seemed inexhaustibly vast and resilient.

The surface still shimmers, but down in the depths is where the truth lies. It’s where the accounts are being kept, where Mother Earth is running our tab and preparing…

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