Tire Reef Ecological Disaster

Another man-made attempt to “improve” upon nature (and dispose of those pesky tires) proves to be an ecological disaster.

“We’ve literally dumped millions of tires in our oceans,” said Jack Sobel, a senior Ocean Conservancy scientist. “I believe that people who were behind the artificial tire reef promotions actually were well intentioned and thought they were doing the right thing. In hindsight, we now realize that we made a mistake.”

I don’t understand this kind of thinking (by anyone, experts or not). Artificial reefs, created from toxic wastes, haphazardly dumped into the ocean were supposed to improve things?

The long term practice of using the world’s ocean as a dumping grounds has been disastrous. Sewage sludge, radioactive waste, biological agents, medical waste, toxins, plastics, petroleum, garbage, coal, slag, limestone, iron, steel, concrete, construction aggregate and ship wastes, are among some of the highly toxic human byproducts dumped in the world’s oceans. There are also scuttled ships, satellites and space stations being dumped into the oceans.

Though deep-sea dumping is banned, ocean dumping continues in a myriad of ways. Runoff from coastal cities has created some rather floating large trash heaps twice the size of Texas, previously documented on this blog. The long term affects are of course, already showing with massively declining oceanic ecosystems around the entire globe.  There is not a single body of water on the planet that is not in decline.
The inability to effectively face the human quotient in this cycle of marine / fisheries death is the reason why the world’s oceans are in such serious decline. Over 12,000 beaches are now quarantined in the United States alone due to contaminents from pollution. That should be sending a strong signal that our oceans are in serious peril, but the toxic dumping continues.

“Not only does the waste flow into the ocean but it also encourages algal blooms to clog up the waterways causing meadows of seagrass, kelp beds and entire ecosystems to die. A zone without any life remaining is referred to as a dead zone and can be the size of entire states like in coastal zones of Texas and Louisiana. All major bays and estuaries now have dead zones from pollution run-off. Often, pollutants like mercury, PCBs and pesticides are found in seafood meant for the dinner table and cause birth defects, cancer and neurological problems€”especially in infants.” Ocean Dumping Grounds

Industrialized civilization, modern agriculture and animal production is entirely responsible for our polluted oceans, which are quite literally, dying before our very eyes. The continued and collective denial of the human affects on planetary ecosystems, climate change and the world’s oceans will ultimately mean our self-imposed destruction as a species.

The natural systems of the world were once more then adequate to provide for human needs, but not any longer.  Eventually, in the not too distant future, humans will die out because of planetary ecocide.  A slow death of a thousand self-inflicted cuts because of our arrogant refusal to live within the natural limits of the environment.

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2 thoughts on “Tire Reef Ecological Disaster

  • February 20, 2007 at 1:54 pm
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    Okay (DUH) – now consider all the other toxins – including radioactive – intentionally ‘dumped’ into the oceans (cradle of life) – ntm the ‘so-called’ inadvertent dumpage (runoff). Shudder.

    As I said previously, Man hasn’t changed (learned) since he pinched his daily loaf in the same cave he ate and slept in.

    And won’t.

    Hence, we are (all) the progenitors of our own certain extinction.

  • February 21, 2007 at 12:06 pm
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    Yep. And sadly, I side with Dr. James Lovelock’s spin on the matter….it will be a better day for the Earth, as a whole, when we are gone.

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