HOW WE FEEL AFTER WATCHING NETFLIX'S SEASPIRACY
It's no secret that we have been in the midst of a worldwide crisis for quite some time. That crisis being Climate Change. The effects of climate change are becoming more and more present every day. Within the past few years, natural disasters have increased exponentially. We are and have been committed to doing our part in halting climate change. One way we take personal responsibility is by committing to use less single use plastic, and by biking to the shop whenever possible.
We know that the actions are small, but if we all take a stand together the changes we could make would be extraordinary.
This is how we felt until we watched the Netflix documentary "Seaspiracy." What we find the most shocking about this documentary is the lack of knowledge we are given as to HOW important the ocean is for regulating the climate. We know that learning the specifics of how important the ocean is can be hard, so first we are going to give you a quick breakdown.
When we burn carbon-based materials, carbon dioxide (CO2) is emitted into the atmosphere. The carbon dioxide gets trapped within the atmosphere, and as more sunlight enters the planet and reflects off the surface, that heat cannot be released outward as it is trapped by this layer of Carbon Dioxide. This is causing the Earth to get warmer and warmer. We are the direct cause of the many effects of climate change.
The ocean is the LARGEST natural way for the Earth to hold carbon without releasing it back into the atmosphere. See Image 1 below. EACH and EVERY organism is vital in maintaining the cycle that traps the Carbon Dioxide in the deep ocean.
Image 1: The Carbon Sequestration Cycle
It has been drilled into our brains that single use plastic, deforestation and carbon emissions are the main causes of Climate Change. Although all of these events are contributing to the climate crisis, Seaspiracy was created to let us know that ocean destruction is a vital part of the conversation that many people are not aware of. For example, approximately 25 million acres of forest are lost every year, yet 3.9 BILLION acres of seafloor are lost to commercial fishing trawling (dragging large nets on the seafloor), destroying vital habitats and ocean sediment. Additionally, seagrass captures and stores Carbon at a rate SEVERAL times faster than rainforests.
Following, we have been taught that single use plastic (such as plastic straws) was the main cause of plastic pollution in the ocean. That is not the case. Abandoned fishing gear makes up at LEAST 46% of plastic garbage sitting in the ocean.
The most shocking revelation of this documentary is that commercial fishing is the NUMBER ONE cause of marine destruction. OVER-fishing is beyond destructive. At this point in time, all fish we consume is not caught sustainably. In other words, we are taking FAR too much wildlife out of the ocean, FASTER than these affected marine populations can reproduce.
Not only are we physically destroying the ocean floor and over-fishing, but the bycatch (other marine wildlife caught in commercial fishing nets) is astonishingly high. It was also revealed that human rights violations were occurring within the commercial fishing industry.
The dolphin safe labels put on most fish products within the supermarket claiming they are "sustainably caught" is flat out not true. There is no way to be 100% sure that the ocean and other species are not harmed when catching fish. In fact, more often than not.. that IS the case for every single fish caught.
What we can do to make the biggest impact when considering what each person can do to help reverse the effects of climate change is to eat plant based. If that is not possible, to stop eating fish altogether.
That single action will help more than any other.
Please keep in mind though that other environmentally sustainable actions should still be practiced as much as possible (such as riding a bike rather than taking a car/train).
We strongly encourage everyone to watch Seaspiracy to learn more. It really will open your eyes. It is time people start talking about how the fishing industry is destroying the oceans and contributing to climate change.
All facts are taken directly from the documentary or Seaspiracy's Instagram Page.
To learn more about how you can help, please visit this link.
Cloak & Dagger