Youtube link : https://youtu.be/0b5vwGvJeAM
We have spoken elsewhere on this website about the destination of marine plastic litter. We mentioned in part, its hazards and damning effects on man and his environment. However, as you have seen from the video above, the disappearance/migration of marine species is no myth. Fishermen who erstwhile returned from a successful fishing trip with a full boat, now return either empty handed or with such few fish that it can hardly make any commercial sense to sell the catch. Thus, commercial fish farming is changing to subsistence fish farming. The livelihood of the fishermen who have known no other trade than fishing is at risk, with more and more empty nets pulled back to the surface, frustration, hunger and poverty looms. Locales may think that the fishes have suddenly begun to ‘finish’, but we know better. Hence, the crux of our message and all our advocacy has been and will remain that the use of the marines should be in such a way that future generations can also use or benefit from it. This is what is known as sustainable use. Not very far from the spot in the video lies a bed of floating plastic litter. It was also noticed that the surface of the water was very oily, and you can be sure that the oxygen content of the water will thus be very low. This may account for the disappearance of fish in the area. We have seen the effects of the plastic litters, but another issue that requires attention is the content of some of the plastic litter. Some, contain dregs of used heavy duty machine oils and other toxic wastes. This shows that the harmful effects we face cannot be fully apparent to the naked eye. The more we warn the public of the harmful effects of marine litter, the more responsive people become to the call to ensure the sustainable use of the ocean by not turning it into trash sites. We don’t want our fishermen to continue to fish for nothing. Now that you know! What would you do different?
ESTHER O’TEGA IMAKU,
Volunteer, AFMESI NIGERIA
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