World Oceans Day is being celebrated as a reminder of the ocean’s importance to the environment.
The day has also highlighted the importance of reducing waste in Australian oceans. The federal Government has more than 200 projects currently underway to protect the nations oceans.
The Minister for the Environment, Sussan Ley, said that the programs will enable continued reduction of emissions and waste, reducing the effect on the environment.
“Healthy oceans not only provide a raft of food, recreation and trade services, but also produce 50 per cent of our oxygen, absorb 93 per cent of heat caused by human activity and up to 30 per cent of carbon dioxide emissions,” Ley said.
A study from World Oceans Day found that cigarette butts, food wrappers, plastic bottles, bottle caps, plastic straws, and plastic bags are the top six items found on beaches
Additionally, CO2 which is produced globally is affecting animals and plants found in Australian and global oceans. Including the 3.3 million square kilometres of protected marine areas within Australia.
“We can all play a role, firstly by recycling our own waste and keep pollution out of our oceans and also by being part of clean up campaigns,” Ley explained.
“From working with the fishing industry to reduce by-catch and ensure sustainability, to the reconstruction of native shellfish reefs and the everyday things we can all do to keep waste out of our waterways and oceans, today is a chance for everyone to think about the difference they can make.”