There are a number of ways human have caused a massive ocean pollution. From plastic waste to toxic chemicals, the marine creatures suffer. So do humans. In the end, the ocean cause an impact into our economy that we have to deal with. Read on these 20 Economic Effects of Ocean Pollution to find out how serious the situation is.
1. Decline in Oysters
For some people in the world, eating oysters from the sea is a delicacy. The market for harvesting and providing oysters to the public is high. It brings in a lot of income and job opportunities for people. However, due to the ocean pollution, the production of oysters has declined. Since the ocean water is becoming more and more acidic, the oysters cannot form their shells. As a result, they are vulnerable to death.
2. Less Fishes Sold
There is an increasing concern for the wellbeing of fish in the ocean. They are considered as one of the major food sources in the world. Plenty of industry and fishermen depend on fish to make their income. But the ocean pollution can put a risk to that. Through all the toxic and plastic waste in the ocean, the fish population is dying out. It continues to decrease especially the salmon.
3. Coral Reefs Loss
It cost trillions of dollars for the world to take care of coral reefs. That also includes all the cost for trying to recover them from bleaching. Coral reefs are very vulnerable to the condition of the ocean. Any slight changes in the temperature can pose a serious threat. Recently, there have been more and more cases of coral bleaching which means more money must be spent. Read more about Causes of Coral Bleaching
4. Less Recreational Income
Another economic effect from ocean pollution would be less recreational income. People come to the coastal area not to only enjoy the ocean but also all the environment surrounding it. Each stores nearby the coasts will also suffer. The ocean pollution causes the sea water to become toxic. The coastal area could become dangerous and less people will come.
5. Money Loss from Cleaning Litter
Due to human products that are thrown away every day, some do end up floating in the ocean such as plastic waste. The ones that float are always cleaned up in order to protect the marine creatures. Moreover, they are too toxic for the sea water. It is estimated that the cost spent for the clean up is very high. Coastal region definitely lose money from all the waste that we produce. You may want to read about Causes of Plastic Pollution in the Ocean
6. Money Loss in Shipping
Industries that rely on renting ships or yachts will also feel the negative effect from the ocean pollution. They lose a lot of money too. Since there are too many litters in the ocean, they have to frequently clean up the motor or valve damage from tangled waste. Sometimes, trash do get caught up in their shipping equipment.
7. Less Number of Tourists
With the decreased quality of the coastal region, there will also be a decrease in tourists coming into the area. Tourists are important economic aspect for the coastal region. They keep job opens and provide extra income. But tourists would be less likely to come if the coral reefs are dead and the beaches are littered with trash.
8. More Money for Beach Clean Up
Waste that are floating in the sea water can actually come back to beaches. The waves will carry them there. Thus, the beaches will experience a mountain of trash. They are not healthy and they do not give the beaches a good look. There is a lot of money loss to have people clean up the beaches regularly. If the beach is not clean, then nobody would come to the place.
9. Increased Budget for Rescue Operations
Coastal areas have a specific budget set for their rescue operations. They help when there danger happens around the area. However, all the waste from the pollution affect their boats. They also need to spend more money on maintenance. Without their equipments, they cannot do their job.
10. Job Loss for People
People will absolutely lose their jobs because of the pollution. It an economic and social effect from the pollution. Shops around the coastal areas will close down because nobody comes anymore. Hotels and restaurants might also have to cut down on their employees to save money. Fishermen might not be able to fish anymore because the fish production is not as high as before. Read more about Social Effects of Ocean Pollution
11. Increased Price
People depend on so much resources from the ocean. But as the ocean health is damaged by all the waste, resources are harder to find. That will cause an increase in the prices of the resources. People will definitely feel the impact of the higher price but it’s a cost that they still have to pay.
12. Money Loss in Aquaculture
Aquaculture depends on the sea water but the pollution is affecting their income growth too. People who specialises in aquaculture must spend more money to clear out all their equipments. For example, the pipes that they use to clean out their farm are often blocked from waste and they have to remove that regularly.
13. Loss Income in Agriculture
Some agriculture areas also receive the negative impact from the pollution. The strong wind brings in waste to their farm. The farmers have to spend more time and money to take care of their animals and their crops. Their animals might even get sick and they have to spend more on the vet.
Other Effects (14-20)
Here are some more economic effects.
- Less Production in Seaweed Income: It serves as food for the world. Read about Types of Seaweed in the Great Barrier Reef
- Disrupted Shipping: They cannot operate properly due to trash.
- Increased Cost for Marine Debris Injuries: People get hurt from the debris.
- Dredging Sea Bed: Clean up all the waste there.
- Destroyed Important Equipments: Cables get destroyed on the sea floor.
- Less Sponges Production: Sponges die out from the pollution. Read more about Uses of Sponges in the Ocean
- Decrease in Medicine Sources: They become more expensive.
It’s never to late to save the ocean. We can start by making the sea water better from good management of waste and prevention of marine pollution.