Why Life Below Water Matters

Our oceans make up about 3/4 of Earth, so there is no denying that they are an essential factor supporting life on the planet. They absorb about 23% of carbon dioxide emissions that humans generate annually, and 90% of the climate system’s excess heat. Oceans are home to nearly a million known and unknown species to man. For the longest time, they have continued to support over 3 billion people’s economic, social, and environmental needs.

Over the years, the vast exploitation of life below water has led to an alarming degradation level. The increasing number of debris in our oceans has an impending environmental and economic impact on everyone and every living creature on this planet. According to the United Nations, “every year, an estimated 5 to 12 million metric tonnes of plastic enters the ocean, costing roughly $13 billion per year.” The primary source of pollutants in our oceans is plastic litter brought about by the massive and worldwide use of single-use plastic items. Irresponsible tourism can also pose a significant threat to our oceans and natural resources.

Taking Action

In protecting life below water, solutions come into different levels: global and local impact. Many countries achieve sustainability by increasing international agreements and cooperation in protecting our oceans and other natural resources. Governments must pivot into understanding the effect of climate change and create a comprehensive and inclusive plan that will efficiently and equitably conserve life below water and ensure their people a sustainable future.

In our communities, we should pivot to a lifestyle that does not harm our environment. We should make wise decisions in purchasing products that harm our environment, like avoiding single-use plastic. There is an urgent need to eliminate plastic pollution in our oceans and waterways by organizing clean-ups on our beaches or even just outside our homes. Our journey to protect our oceans can also begin by raising awareness about the importance of life below water and why we need to protect it.

 

To Read More About UN Sustainability Goal # 14, check THIS out!

Click to access E_infographics_14.pdf

A Complete Introduction on Marine Conservation with Eco-Conscious Diver

Even though the global pandemic kept us indoors, Barrel Bag continues to find ways of bringing you opportunities to learn more about our environment and its conservation. 

This month, we are thrilled to share with you that we are partnering with Eco-Conscious Diver to bring you everything you need to know about Marine Conservation. This 6-hour online course is a step by step guide to learning and implementing your marine conservation journey! This self-paced program is perfect for aspiring conservationists, recreational divers, or anyone who simply loves the ocean and wants to learn more about it, how to take action. When you enroll in this course using our affiliate link, you’re also donating to our ongoing fundraiser, Barrel Bag Community Impact Campaign!

 

 

By the end of this course, you’ll be able to:

  • Speak intelligently about our underwater world.
  • Learn how to begin taking action immediately.
  • Be equipped with tools to gain data survey experience.

Upon enrollment, you’ll have immediate access to all course content, including:

  • Video Lessons
  • Workshops
  • Helpful Links/Resources
  • Private Online Community 
  • 24/7 access to members-only community to ask questions and network with other like-minded newbie marine conservationists.
  • Lifetime Access Across All Devices *including all future updates*

Upon completion, you’ll receive:

  • A certificate of completion
  • 2 PADI certifications: Project AWARE & Coral Reef Conservation
  • 10% OFF entire Eco-Conscious Diver website & upcoming trips/events.
  • Access to an exclusive Facebook group for weekly live Q&A sessions.
  • Quizzes & activities to check knowledge and retention.
  • Training for data surveys & materials.
  • + TWO Bonus Education Sections: Shark & Ray Conservation, Marine Protected Areas.

Click HERE to enroll now!

Barrel Bag Community Impact Campaign

The Barrel Bag Community Impact Campaign aims to partner and support other nonprofit organizations focused on ocean conservation, youth environmental education, and plastic policy.

Our first partner is the Green Schools Alliance, a worldwide network of schools committed to reducing their greenhouse gas emissions and accelerating sustainable solutions.

We will use a portion of the funds raised through this campaign to provide free Barrel Bags to a Green Schools Alliance member school.

 

Today, we are happy to announce that we are 20% closer to our goal! Thank you so much to all of our generous donors throughout the past few weeks. No matter how big or small your contributions were, know that you are supporting our mission to protect our world.

 

To donate, click the link below.

https://charity.gofundme.com/o/en/campaign/barrelbagimpact/barrelbag?fbclid=IwAR135V-unP2vKrLVj0wy43N1JmobCeO9rcP-FAzi_43M4Kq-Ta_JvqUYBBo

Virtual Clean Up Results

Despite being in quarantine, our Barrel Bag community was able to collect 227 cubic feet of plastic and 59 cubic feet of trash.

Congratulations to our giveaway winners @sea_dreamer_ for participating in the most cleanups and @kendraperrycoaching for collecting the most trash!

Thank you so much to our community members, partners, & our entire team for joining our movement and leading the way to keep our environment clean. If you’re bummed you didn’t win, don’t worry, we will be hosting another Virtual Cleanup soon! Follow us on Instagram @barrelbag for updates!

The Reality of California’s Plastic Bag Pollution Situation

In this “mockumentary”, Academy Award-winner Jeremy Irons, narrates the harsh reality of California’s plastic pollution. Let us know your insights!

 

Credit Video name: The Majestic Plastic Bag by Heal The Bay

Credit Link: www.healthebay.org

 

4 Main Ways Harmful Trash ends up in the Ocean

IMPROPER WASTE DISPOSAL AND HANDLING

When trash or recyclables are transported from residential trashcans and/or commercial dumpsters to landfills or recycling facilities. Oftentimes, people place trash and recyclables into overflowing bins, attracting unwanted or other wildlife scavengers, causing the excess debris to be carried or blown away and scattered onto the streets, beaches, waterways etc.

LITTERING

Litter thrown on the streets is carried by wind and rainwater into storm drains. Te polluted runoff flows into our streams and rivers, and eventually into the ocean. In California, storm drains are not connected to wastewater treatment plants, which means litter which enters the storm drains goes straight into the ocean.

PRODUCTS THAT GO DOWN THE DRAINS

When we wash our clothes in the washing machine, fabric microfibers (some of which may contain plastics) are released. These microbers go down our drains into wastwater treatment plants. They are too small to be filteres out by wastwater treatments and end up being released into our waterways.

MARINE ACTIVITIES

Fishermen lose and/or irresponsibly abandon their fishing gear-including nets and ropes because of stroms, other passing vessels, or simply abandon them because they are old and worn out. Sometimes, people on boats throw their trash overboard, or trash accidentally falls, gets blown or washed off vessels into the water.