Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 - Advanced)
Topic: HEALTH (10/13/16)
TITLE: The Garbage Patch
By Brenda Rice
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As you walked along the stream, in a peaceful state of mind, your focus remained on the beauty of your surroundings. God created that perfect landscape to compliment the stream. Everything was organic—natural—nothing was man-made.
Suddenly, something caught your eye—something that wasn’t organic—something that didn’t belong.
It could have been a Styrofoam cup, plastic bottle or bag floating down the pristine waterway. Where will that man-made item end up if you don’t pick it up? You got it. It will find its way to a river, and its journey will continue until it reaches one of earth’s oceans or seas.
On a lovely day in 1997, a man from California sailed his 50 foot catamaran into an area of the Pacific Ocean some 800 miles from Hawaii. The ten thousand square mile oval is referred to as The Garbage Patch.
For one week, Captain Charles Moore sailed through a swirling cauldron of toxic waste twice the size of Texas. First he saw miles of ghostly plastic bags floating. Then he saw plastic bottles, oil jugs, mangled tarps, tires, bath toys, and fishing nets, filament lines and ropes tying it all together.
Further investigation found that beneath the floating waste at depths of 365 meters to 4000 meters garbage had also accumulated.
Since that time four hundred Dead Zones, as they are called, have been located in our oceans and seas. They are called Dead Zones because there are no predators such as tunas or sharks living there, because there are no smaller fish to prey upon.
Man-made pollutants: pesticides, herbicides, chemical fertilizers, detergents, oil, sewage, plastics and other solids collect in oceans depths, where they are consumed by small marine organisms and introduced into the global food chain.
When the food chain is contaminated, we suffer the effects also. Marine mammals are often killed when they eat or become entangled in solid waste.
Our oceans are no longer healthy.
When a human being has a health crisis, they seek medical attention. A specialist is often called in. Diagnostic tests are done. A course of action is decided upon until the person’s health improves.
Many learned and passionate people have sounded the alarm about how sick our oceans and waterways are, but the general populace remains uninformed.
Everywhere people go they take dangerous items with them; items that can injure or sicken our environment and the earth’s water. Picnic supplies such as plastic tablecloths, Styrofoam cups or plates, plastic soda or water bottles, and even disposable baby diapers are some of the things left behind that clutter our environment and poison our oceans.
God gave us this beautiful, blue planet rotating in precise orbit around the sun. His creation was perfect. He made man and woman in His own image, and put them in a perfect garden to live. God came down in the cool of the day to commune with His special creations.
Fast forward a few thousand years. I wonder how God feels about the way humans have treated the world He gave them. I wonder if there’s time to heal the damage we’ve done to our planet and our oceans.
I don’t know the answer to my musings, but I can pray that God will give mankind the wisdom to save our waterways and oceans before they are too sick to be healed.
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