Melaque, Mexico High School Project – writing about our oceans

A class at the San Patricio Melaque high school in Mexico conducted additional research and wrote essays to endeavour to explain why our oceans are so important and the ways that humans are decimating them.  The students emphasize why we must take action to stop the destruction of our oceans.  [Excerpts follow.]

The essays are being compiled into a book that will be presented at the Guadalajara International book fair.  It will be available in University of Guadalajara libraries and will also be distributed for consultation, in the libraries of the University of the State of Jalisco, Mexico.

WP_000253-001

 EXCERPTS FROM STUDENT ESSAYS

WHAT IS HAPPENING TO OUR OCEANS?

It is a case of a bad interpretation of cost-benefit, believing that it is more important to have more economic resources than the reduction of the damage to the environment.

Claudia Liliana Vigil Ávalos

It is amazing the rapid way with which we are ending our oceans, as if we had the task with a time limit to finish with all the good things that the oceans give us.  We don’t appreciate the thousands of good things that our country has: beautiful beaches, rivers, very beautiful places . . . and it is obvious that we want a nice, clean place, in a nutshell, that is free of pollution, but what we do? The first thing is to bring things to eat, the majority in plastic. . . and we leave all the garbage behind and do not gather up anything.  What happens with that garbage is that the wind comes, and the bags, bottles, etc., are blown into the seas, rivers or to the nearest place, leaving them unsightly.  Much of what  goes into the rivers arrives also in the oceans where the plastic can cause many things such as the death of marine species by suffocation, poisoning, etc.

Mora Reyes Ramo del Rocío

A branch of overfishing which brings negative consequences in different marine species, is bycatch:  Unwanted fish and other marine species are thrown overboard from the boat, simply by the fact of not being the desired species, a significant way to waste food simply by the fact of it not meeting the desired requirements.

. . . It is estimated that up to 170 million sharks die each year because of the hunting of shark fins.  Sharks kill only 5 people a year.  I wonder, who in reality is the predator?

Leonardo Jesús Téllez González

Many things contaminate the ocean, but a major source of pollution are plastics.  There are countless debris that are thrown into the sea.

. . . Not only trash affects oceans, but noise within it also affects it very excessively, causing the death of mammals such as the dolphin and whale.

. . . When large vessels enter the sea with large nets to fish, there are on many occasions those seeking only a single species, and when the nets are full of many varieties of marine species, they just select what they are looking for and all that does not serve them are thrown into the sea, even if they are already dead.

. . . We see the great utility that [the ocean] is, as well as food provided to us by means of fishing, the employment of many people who depend on it, and it is also necessary for transportation. There are so many advantages that the ocean gives us, sometimes it seems unreal that we ourselves want to end that.

Mora Reyes Ramo del Rocío

I wonder how is it possible that we human beings are capable of destroying things so nice and beautiful as are the oceans?  I say ‘we’ because it is not necessarily a large factory or company that contaminates with waste, or a grand hotel that empties its drainage into the sea, but also the simple act of throwing rubbish at sea, a plastic bottle, or debris that you and I throw into the sea, that is sufficient to contribute to the great harm that we do to the oceans and beaches. . . It is difficult to recognize that we ourselves are ending the things that bring us life, i.e. that humans for their subsistence should exploit natural resources and marine resources are among these.

. . . Almost every corner of the oceans has been damaged in some way by human activity.

. . . The human population grows as a geometric progression, therefore, there is increasingly greater demand for food and the basic needs human life. This implies an increase in use of raw materials, energy, and finished products and more waste, among which there are often many toxic substances. This development has led to major changes in the land: entire regions in the areas of the tropics have become deserts, plants and animal species have disappeared forever, and others are in danger of extinction. We still have time to reverse the current situation, but the road is going to be very hard for anything fast, since so many years of pollution cannot be eliminated overnight.

Diana Esmeralda Flores Bivian

Most people who go to the sea and swim in it, do not see the problems that face the ocean and we believe that the sea is so big that the pollution will not affect it.  Unfortunately the sea is taken as a garbage dump, a landfill that is filling up.

Luis Antonio Ponce de león

Let us remember one very important thing of the oceans, they inhabit a huge number of species, of which many others are fed, but many animals confuse plastics with their food, and this causes huge numbers of animals to die. Some other animals are trapped in nets or garbage remains stuck on their bodies.

. . . The human being has been ravaging everything in its path; It is true that it has made a breakthrough in technology, household products and consumable products (canned food, bottled beverages, etc.) but that has brought consequences, and the principal one is pollution.

. . . The fact that the oceans are immense does not mean that they are not contaminated or that they eliminate the garbage.  Actually the garbage is there and, depending on the type of material, it can last a very long time in the oceans.

. . . The oceans are very important.  We need to take care of them, otherwise nature will lose its balance, the food chain will be broken and both us and many species will have to find a way to adapt to the environment in which we live.  The species that fail to adapt will die.

Yessenia Topete Reynaga

Much plastic soon reaches the oceans because we threw it to the ground or in the rivers, and all of this leads to the seas and harms them greatly. More so the fish, because they mistake the plastics for food and eat them, and in the end, we are the ones that consume the fish and with this, we are eating plastic, the same plastic that we threw away and that can damage and affect our body.

María Sarahi Ávalos Álvarez

Most people do not worry about the sea, if looks clean or dirty, they only bother to go fishing, swimming and if they see bags on the beaches they do not take the trouble to collect what they see lying around, and that is another of the many problems that exist for the pollution of the sea.

. . . Since plastics threaten sea life at all levels of the food chain, from the great oceans, to the fish that we eat often; the plastic waste pollution is not only what you see on the beaches but it is also in the depths of the oceans or surfaces, also in the islands or more uninhabited coasts, and plastics are slow to photodegrade.

Mora Reyes Luz Blanca

Marine pollution is the direct or indirect introduction of substances in the marine environment, which ultimately harm living resources, jeopardize human health, alter maritime activities, and reduce the recreational value and the quality of the water of the sea.

Dulce María Rivera Ortega

Solid waste including bags, foam and other debris dumped in the ocean from land or from ships at sea are frequently ingested by marine mammals, fish and birds that mistake it for food, with often disastrous consequences. Abandoned fishing nets remain adrift for years, and many fish and mammals get entangled in them. In some regions, ocean currents wash trillions of plastic, decomposing objects and debris to form huge swirls of garbage.

Humberto Josue Garcia Rosas

The first casualty of plastics at sea is animal life.

. . . Many contaminants accumulate in the depths of the ocean, where they are ingested by small marine organisms.

. . . We know that maritime transport help us to move from one place to another by water but this does not justify the amount of gasoline left, and there is a growing amount of yachts, boats, boats and jet skis that are polluting.

Ensiso Flores Jorge Ivan

By eliminated a species, we can alter an entire food chain of an ecosystem. . .

Alejandra Adoray Guzmán Tejeda

While subsistence fishing has a limited impact on marine ecology, commercial fishing has a high impact and many tons of fish, birds and mammals die at sea.

. . . Do you think that it is pleasant to enjoy the beach knowing that at the bottom of the ocean there is inorganic waste . . . What disgusts me too, moreover, is it is repugnant to see “black waste” from oil and waste from factories floating on the water.

María de Lourdes Polanco Vázquez

RECOMMENDATIONS:

From the basic education (preschool, primary and secondary) incorporate a matter solely dedicated to the care of the planet and to the development of an attitude toward environmental care. Generate a real love for our planet.

Claudia Liliana Vigil Ávalos

When you have the opportunity to enjoy the ocean, do not throw garbage; do not add anything that could affect the life that takes place there. Respects its ecosystem and the elements that live there.
Let’s start with ourselves to improve, excel ourselves, and make a difference.

Diana Esmeralda Flores Bivian

Instead of using resources that require that require petroleum-based fuels, we can use resources that provide renewable energy.

. . . Before you begin a project of cleaning on the beach or in the community, start with a clean-up project with your family and in your home.  The home is the best place to start, because the garbage that is located in the streets, on the sidewalks, in the rivers, lakes and many other places, they end up on the beaches, in the oceans, and in the mouth of many animals.

Yessenia Topete Reynaga

Ocean pollution leads to the destruction of habitat of various animals and one should find out about this to know that it is alarming.  I know some people who say “me, I don’t mind pollution, that is not my problem”.  I do not understand how people do not start thinking about the serious problem that WE ALL cause, because at some time we all have thrown garbage into the sea or have left it on the beach. . . It would be a very good idea to create laws against this, because pollution has become a global problem.

María de Lourdes Polanco Vázquez

Generating less waste and prefering organic products are important alternatives that work with the integral health of the planet.

Alejandra Adoray Guzmán Tejeda

. . . We must support this cause, do not discard our waste, nor burn garbage . . . We must, recycle, reduce and reuse, to be able to stop a little this phenomenon that is making us without a planet.

Pedro Rogelio García Méndez

Each person must take awareness of the damage that we do to the oceans and all must do our part to decrease a little pollution.  For example when we go to the beach, collect garbage that we see thrown, or at least, collect what we ourselves use to live with.  That is to contribute a bit with how much that the oceans provide us.  We must not forget that we receive many good things from them, and we must give back by helping collect or recycle the plastics we use at home, separating garbage, eating healthy, not buying so many canned foods, and not smoking.  There are many ways to help, because the truth, although many people do not want to see, is pollution is a problem of the first magnitude and perhaps they do not have sufficient information to realize that every day the problem grows more.

Mora Reyes Luz Blanca

REFLECTIONS AND CONCLUSIONS:

The human being . . . is the only one who can make the real change to put an end to the situation which is located around the world.  We are its worst enemy, and in turn, its only salvation.

. . . I am 100 % sure that the date will come on which the world weeps when it sees that every day the species are becoming extinct in an accelerated manner and that our oceans are no longer blue, but it will be much too late, since the wounds that we do to our planet are not cured, not even with the highest technology that we could create, that I doubt very much could fix our planet.

Leonardo Jesús Téllez González

I had previously never realized how damaged is our planet and, above all, animals that inhabit not only the oceans, but also the land, are disappearing and all because we are too complacent regarding our social responsibility and our environment.  We forget that we are here on this planet in passing and that it is the legacy that our children are going to acquire in the future. Therefore we must take care of our planet and respect it.

. . . The oceans are very extensive, and we think that they have no end, but they have, and our planet is the only one on which human beings can live.  Then:  why would you not take care of it, avoid the pollution of everything not only of water, but also of our air?  Let’s prevent from disappearing those species that are an important part of our lives.   We must care for them and protect them, because someday this will be a heritage for our children and for ourselves. When we are adults, we can tell our offspring how we contributed to prevent the pollution of our planet.

. . . It is the only planet that we can inhabit and due to our lack of interest and lack of awareness we continue polluting it to the maximum, without having the slightest idea of the damage we are causing to the planet and therefore to those who inhabit it.  Let’s take care of the planet since we need it simply to be able to survive.  If we take care of it, we will be able to take advantage of everything we are offered.

Pedro Rogelio García Méndez

It is your beach, your sea, your world and you have to do something for them.

Claudia Liliana Vigil Ávalos

I want my children and my grandchildren to know the sea as well as many relatives of yours and that is why I urge you with all my heart to be aware and appreciate what we have and that we extract benefit from it.  It is the reason why we must be more observant and begin to help the planet.  There are many problems that we have caused and I hope that everyone who reads this message will do something small for what I’m asking, because little by little we are killing ourselves.

María Sarahi Ávalos Álvarez

Do we have time to reverse the current situation of things? It’s not going to be an easy road nor fast. Given that the population continues to increase, and that is something against which little we can do, there is no other way than by policies, practices and ecological attitudes. If we do not do this, it will be the planet itself ultimately incapable of providing us with the food necessary to sustain the thousands of millions of people that inhabit it.

. . . If Mexicans worked together, we can prevent, or eliminate this problem [marine pollution]; cleaning beaches and dirty seas, stop littering on beaches, industries do not throw their waste drainage . . . Yes, it can be achieved to have oceans and seas clean.

. . . We must not only think at the present moment, but in future generations, with the objective that development and progress should be harmonic and that resources and the environment  should be used in a rational manner.

Alejandra Adoray Guzmán Tejeda

In the oceans we find different species of fish and coral reefs which are being most affected by pollution because it is their habitat and their world that we are destroying and it is not important for us.  We believe that all the time is going to be equal the planet, but our error is we can only see when it is too late to fix this problem.

. . . The majority of the people that I know, being intelligent or not, do not know the answer when asked what do you think about the pollution of the oceans? Their answers are very sad responses.  Some claim to be responsible and look for excuses to not continue talking about this topic and other only say “don’t know”.

. . . We “human beings can reason and this characteristic that differentiates us from the other animals”, but today we do not use our reasoning and that is why we are as we are and we do not care about the planet, but to be well economically and to have everything.  But if we have everything: in fact are we well?  Not if we don’t have the most important thing, which is a good planet.

. . . We are killing our species and all for not knowing how to take care of our planet and always wanting more and more, even though resources are being exhausted.

. . . The oceans are and will be as the universe is, still not completely explored and we do not know what types of unknown species are living there and perhaps we will never know because we are destroying these ecosystems.

. . . We of this generation need to do a little on our part to try to stop the pollution and not leave to our next generation this type of problem, and to have to correct our mistakes.

Luis Antonio Ponce de león

The problem of the pollution of the oceans . . . is something very serious, everyone will suffer the consequences of all this, but what else can we expect if we are causing this. Many do not have a conscience about it, and failure to so will bring very large problems for everyone.

. . . Polluting the oceans is a very ugly situation, because thanks to them we have food, work, and we can do aquatic activities. Also, the oceans give us landscapes and animals, and the sad reality is that we are paying them back in a very unfair way . . .  contaminating them more and more.  Thanks to the ocean there is life, because they give us the oxygen that we need. . . if the oceans die, we die, because without the oceans, we do not have enough oxygen to breathe. . . It is time to make us aware and react, because our planet is dying and we cannot allow that. All together we can make significant changes to our planet, and we can begin with pollution, to do whatever possible to stop it.

. . . One of the major concerns is how we will leave the environment  to our descendants. I am sure that anyone would like to leave their children a planet on which they could live with tranquility and health. It is only fair that our descendants will be able to enjoy the world as we have done until today.

. . . It is time that we pay back the oceans all that they have given us, because the oceans give us so many things, and what you expect in return is that we take care of them and try a good way, but we do the opposite. Actually it gives me sadness that we are so unconscious about these issues.

Dulce María Rivera Ortega

There are many people that don’t care about pollution, even knowing that this is something that is very bad for our planet, but if we know that it is bad, why do we continue doing it? That is what we should ask ourselves, and thus reflect on the damage we are causing.  Perhaps reflecting, we worry at least a little bit and as well, do something to stop this terrible situation. It is necessary that everyone who is willing, give a bit to improve this situation, but the sad thing is that many would not be willing, either because of laziness or because they do not think it is important.  The ocean gives us many things and it is not fair that we are paying her back in this cruel way.

. . . Only humans are the culprits for the oceans getting sick. It is so terrible that many do not consider this issue important.  It causes sadness because the oceans give us so many things, for us to pay them this way is so ugly.

. . . We should give some thought if we do not want to leave an ugly planet to our children. Only we humans can avoid this.  All of us may not want to do this, but if there are several of us of that wanted to put an end to this, we might achieve it.

. . . It is necessary to take care of them [our oceans] very well to give them in good condition to our children.

Rodrigo Daniel Brambila Melchor

We must put an “up to here” to our lack of interest in keeping our oceans clean and free of trash to be able to prevent the death of thousands of species of marine life; we must preserve all the good things that nature gives us. Because at the rate we are going we will end up drowning in our dirt that is caused by what we throw away into the sea, and it would be better if we do not complain about our living conditions, because we are the ones causing the same, so if we want to preserve everything good that nature gives us, let us start by putting out our grain of sand: trying to not put garbage into the sea, using less plastic, not burning garbage, etc. It is best to start to raise the voice of “now”, before it is too late, because by then the lamentations will serve no purpose. Shall we start?

Mora Reyes Ramo del Rocío

Each person is aware of the world that he or she wants to not destroy – not only the oceans and seas, but also to the whole world, since we are also polluting the soil and air, and we are ending the world little by little with climate change.
Try not to pollute the world because it is as if we contaminate ourselves as well.

Humberto Josue Garcia Rosas

Advertisements

3 comments

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s