The sea covers over 70 percent of the planet and is full of vulnerable yet vital ecosystems. These bodies of water feed humans and provide oxygen for breathing. They are extremely important for supporting life on land. Without oceans, climate change would have devastated Earth already, decimating life. Despite this, the rise in global temperatures is beginning to cause great harm to the sea in several different ways.
Death Of Sea Life
As the waters of the world are becoming warmer, there has been an increase in the amount of coral that has died due to bleaching. These structures are important for supporting biodiversity. When they die other forms of sea life follow. This means that numerous creatures are left without food and are forced to migrate, damaging the ecosystem even further. Furthermore, heat has been known to disrupt the development and growth of different organisms, including octopus and squid species.
Melting Of Polar Ice Caps
In recent years, polar ice has started to melt at an alarmingly fast rate. Every year Arctic sea ice on this continent dips down to new lows due to the rising temperature of the water. On the other side of the world, Antarctica is beginning to shrink from underneath, with submerged ice melting faster than ever before.
It is already well documented how devastating this melting has been for polar bears. Their habitat is disappearing, as well as their sources of food. Scientists are also concerned about the effects that are not visible on the surface. Algae forms a fundamental part of the Arctic food chain. Its growth is dependent on sea ice. With it melting rapidly, algae is starting to disappear, creating a ripple effect for seals, bears and whales.
Krill live in sea ice and are eaten by different species of birds and mammals, including penguins. As krill populations decrease, the various creatures that depend on it for survival are also declining in numbers. Even human beings are being affected. The cod industry is struggling and people are now turning to other types of fish for eating.
As sea levels rise, flooding is likely to impact communities that live in coastal areas. Erosion could also break away coastal land faster thanks to polar ice melts.