The de-oxygenation of oceans is one of the most detrimental effects of anthropogenic activities, however it is under-reported. Identify the factors behind it and mention its socio-economic and environmental implications.

Ocean de-oxygenation is a phenomenon where more carbon dioxide is dissolved in the ocean water and oxygen availability is reduced.

Most detrimental:

  • Loss of marine life.
  • Decline of Coral and phytoplankton.
  • Shifting of isocline (carbonate dissolved line)
  • Phenomenon of winter kill and food insecurity in surrounding region.
  • Biodiversity loss.

Causes behind it:

  • Increasing global warming and more injection of carbon dioxide in oceans through carbon cycles.
  • Discharge of Industry effluent into oceans and increasing BOD (biological oxygen demand) and COD (chemical oxygen demand) of water.
  • Phenomenon of eutrophication, winter kill, harming ocean life and more oxygen used by decomposer.
  • Inefficient ocean exploration and degassing of harmful gases from basin.
  • Unsustainable fishing and toxic substances like plastic being thrown into sea.

Socio-economic implications:

  • Loss of marine resources.
  • Vicious cycle of poverty, hunger and diseases increases.
  • Pollution of rich mineral at sea bed.
  • Loss of tourism due to loss of scenic beauty of corals and its colours.
  • Frequent occurrence of natural hazards.

Environmental implication:

  • Global warming will increase.
  • Submergence of coastal plain.
  • More algal bloom.
  • Toxic substance and invasive species will tend to flourish.
  • Less availability of oxygen will give birth to new toxic cycles which will threaten biodiversity.

Conventions like UNCLOS, MARPOL should work in resonance with nature to save humanity from such ill effects.


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