For many decades our oceans have suffered the repercussions of our actions, it’s time to own up. So many people are clueless to how packaged goods are made, and where they might go after leaving our homes. In a broad sense recycling plastic is beneficial to the environment, yet why is so much littered over the coast.

There are a few things that come to mind when I think about the reason this might be. First, people often forget how to recycle the correct way. When it comes to the blue bin there are many things’ people don’t know. For example, you need to rinse the material you are recycling of any of its previous contents. The reason for this is when it arrives to the recycling facility, they will not have time to sterilize each product. In return means the plastic content is then thrown out. This is essentially the equivalent to throwing a plastic yogurt container directly into the garbage, not good. Another reason for package waste contaminating our oceans is due to litter. Many times, people are too lazy to take responsibility for their garbage. Personally, I don’t believe anyone is intentionally trying to harm the environment, generally it’s just their lack of effort. Most times it’s blatant arrogance rather than lack of knowledge.

Not all hope is lost! Thankfully we have so many aspiring environmental advocates on our side. The first solution to reducing package waste in our oceans is education. As a society we need to integrate more environmental consciousness courses into our student’s curriculum. This would be a great way to help the youth start good habits early. The next solution could be stricter resource management. If all industrial companies here on out were required to use 100% biodegradable packaging than waste on the water would be less of an issue. To be completely honest this would be the best way to prevent future damage to the environment rather solve the issue presented in front of us. Another solution could involve a horseshoe shaped Bouey contraption. This could be an effective way to catch floating waste and help mitigate the overall health of our ocean’s ecosystem.

Nothing is impossible if you put your mind to it and work as a team. There is a very little chance all of the world’s oceans will entirely get restored, but overtime we will fix this issue. It starts ultimately by identifying the issue and starting to think about how to fix it. As a society we are already doing so much to turn green, yet we still have a long way to go. Renewable recourses and biodegradable products are what is going to solve this issue directly. It’s up to us to make a change, to think about somebody other than ourselves. Time will only tell how these solutions prevail; time will be the dictator. If we don’t get 50% if not everybody to get on board with these environmental changes soon, we will run out of time to fix what we have done.

Essay by: Nikoli Habek
Cascade High School

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