To help celebrate World Oceans Day this Sunday, SEA LIFE Melbourne Aquarium’s conservation team T.R.A.C.K.S took recycling to the extreme to provide a unique glimpse into the effects of litter on our marine environment.
Surrounded by massive sharks and giant stingrays, today in SEA LIFE Melbourne Aquarium’s Mermaid Garden exhibit, two divers took the plunge into the 2.2 million litre Oceanarium to help clean-up the massive tank. With their rubbish-pick-up tongs in tow, the divers fished out commonly found plastic items such as drink bottles and milk crates, to help raise awareness about the serious plastic pollution problem throughout the world’s oceans.
Championing the theme ‘together we have the power to protect the ocean’, the T.R.A.C.K.S team aims to further educate the public on the effects pollution has on our local marine animals, while highlighting the ways individuals can take action and do their bit to protect our ocean for future generations.
MARINE POLLUTION: THE FACTS
- Thousands of marine birds, mammals, reptiles and fish are killed or injured each year due to entanglements in poorly discarded fishing line and other plastic waste
- At least 77 species of marine wildlife found in Australian waters have been impacted by entanglement or ingesting plastic debris during the last three and a half decades
- Cigarette butts can take up to 12 months to break down in freshwater and up to five years to break down in seawater
- 95% of the litter found on our beaches comes from suburban streets through the stormwater system
- Each year, Yarra River traps collect 500 tonnes of rubbish, preventing it from reaching the bay
HELP SAVE OUR PRECIOUS OCEANS
“Being part of the solution is easy. If you are out and not near a rubbish bin, take your litter home. Carry a bag with you and treat public environments like you would your own home.These simple actions can really go a long way to help keep the environment clean, ensuring the marine animals that call these habitats home are safe and healthy,” said T.R.A.C.K.S leader, Cheryl Laks.
The T.R.A.C.K.S conservation warriors are also calling out for like-minded locals to head down to Batman and Enterprise Parks (along the Yarra River, opposite the aquarium) this Sunday at 10am for a Clean Up Australia event, to collect and clean up rubbish from the banks of the river.