Marine Pollution Essay

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Pollution is the introduction or release of substances or energy that decrease the quality of the marine environment. Many pollutants are toxic of harmful to marine life (Castro and Huber, 2010).
South Africa is known around the world for being one of the most diverse marine environment in the world, with 83% of the known fish families residing in South Africa (Van der Elst, 2007). There are also many marine species that are endemic to South Africa, which means they are only found in South Africa. Almost 30% of the South African population lives on the coastline (Taljaard et al. 2006), which has led to the urbanization of the coastlines and which then led to the industrialization of these areas. This industrialization has led to high pollution levels. The pollution that is being emitted daily from the coast lines around South Africa can and is causing damage to the marine ecosystem, such as crippling the fish populations and coral bleaching. It is also ruining the amazing marine biodiversity that South Africa has. Pollution not only comes from industrial sector such as oil companies, but also from littering and sewage.

Plastic pollution is one of the types of pollution that effect the marine environment. It is impossible to give an accurate estimation of the amount of plastic that is being polluted into the ocean. However, in 1975 the global fishing fleet alone dumped approximately 135 400 tons of plastic fishing gear and 23 600 tons of synthetic packaging materials
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