Krystal Blue Intl.

Save the Ocean – Save the Planet
August 7, 2012, 9:36 pm
Filed under: Coral Reef, The Water Cycle | Tags: , ,

Living in the 21st Century, we find ourselves facing major challenges as a global community. One of the most serious of these is the pollution of our oceans. We must stop the madness now! We have to find workable solutions immediately, stop being apathetic and blind to our blatant disregard for our beautiful life giving oceans. As individuals, we must take responsibility by taking action. Education is the first step to change. Our oceans are the lungs of the planet. If we do not act now, WE will not survive.

One of the main problems humans are causing to destroy our oceans is chemical contamination. PCB is one of the major contaminants to our seas, and more is waiting to escape from transformers and capacitors across the world. PCB is a general term when referring to oil, gas, or other pollutants. PCB’s are not water-soluble and when released into the atmosphere they accumulate into the fat cells of living organisms. Marine mammals are said to have 10 million times more PCB’s in their fat than in the water they exist in. That’s a shocking number to compete with if you ask the average person. Does that make you wonder how much PCB’s are in your fat cells? How much oil do you swallow when you take a sip of water? This is the kind of water our oceanic wonders are forced to live in. As a result many of them are dieing, becoming extinct, or getting very ill. If human kind is going to survive we have to make relative changes in our production technologies. So, in other words the best way to eliminate pollution is to change the way we live, Produce, and exist on planet earth.

Does this mean that we now need to outlaw oil and gasoline to end oils spill destruction? That might be the only answer. Once oil is spilled into the ocean the damage that is caused is irreversible. The oil rig companies use one layered tanks that are unsafe for transporting liquid murder through our exhaustible oceanic environment. Tankers “accidentally” dump oil into the ocean and a countless number of ships going to and from Central and South America dump trash as soon as they get far enough away from port that no one notices. You know the saying “What happens in New Orleans, stays in New Orleans” well at sea no one notices the infractions, no one is there to ticket, fine or revoke these blatant criminals. The public does not see the damage till dead, oil-suffocated carcasses wash ashore. The attitude of oil tankers is similar to that of the entire political world, brushing “accidents” under the rug and hiding evidence, although the evidence in this case is hard to hide.

An estimated 8.8 million tons of oil enter the ocean each year as a result of human activity. The ocean contains 280,000 tons of tar balls. Our oceans that seem an unlimited resource for us to take advantage of, are now showing their limits. These chemicals cannot be filtered out or washed clean from our most valuable natural resource. Ultimately we will destroy our ocean, and without the oxygen created by the ocean, the human race will cease to exist.

Small changes can be made in our habits as individuals and also as a Global Community. Such as: recycling or reusing plastic, paper, glass, and aluminum, proper disposal of engine oils and toxic chemicals, limiting water usage, and reduction of the use of plastic. It is non bio-degradable. Plastic does not break down, it photo-degrades, which means it breaks into millions of tiny pieces over several years, these bits are called plastic polymers. This plastic, in large pieces like bottles, or in microscopic bits like Styrofoam, will kill oceanic prosperity as we know it.

Through utter disregard for our environment all of these materials are ending up in our oceans, which have become a personal liquid grave for anything unwanted. Plastic not only kills our marine animals it also acts as a sponge for DDT’s, PCB’s, and other oily pollutants. Discarding our lives into the ocean will only kill off our species (and many others) even more quickly. Things like plastic should be used wisely and disposed of properly. There are advantages to it but plastic can become a disadvantage when not used properly. Obviously keeping plastic out of the ocean is extremely important. At the rate of its growth in our oceans it may have already created an island of plastic. Not exactly the vacation retreat you had planned for right? Well the change needed to save our ocean, starts at home.

The problem is that these days we humans do not use anything properly, (excluding the Laptop, and cellular phone.) Humans are making up the rules as we go and ignoring the examples set by pollution damage thus far, for instance, the hole in the ozone layer, which only grows more and more each day. Fisheries send divers out to poison or seas with cyanide and bomb our coral reefs, to provide fish for our fish tanks. Unable to catch life on the rebound, our marine ecosystem could be depleted. To prevent this loss of biodiversity in our oceans we must vote to implement no-catch zones and Marine reserves. Our ocean is a massive, almost unending, body of life. Our beautiful earth is just crumbling before our eyes, while we blatantly ignore the consequences. With such a big prize at stake, isn’t it time to take the initiative?

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Experience and Learn How to Save the Ocean

People learn more effectively if they experience something first-hand. That’s why educational institutions these days provide experiential learning programs for young students, along with grown ups, who want to learn about ocean facts.

The major oceans on the planet are home to distinctive ocean creatures. These animals are simply not just the usual fishes or whales, but also cephalopods, crustaceans, plants, and birds. Some of these creatures are on the brink of extinction and many are endangered.

Individuals, as well as some organizations, have contributed greatly in the efforts to save the ocean. While their works are helpful, they can’t do it alone. People have to do their part in protecting this diverse ecosystem.

So, what can individuals do in order to help save the ocean? First, we could encourage awareness by studying ocean facts. Education and learning will encourage awareness, which in turn will promote its preservation. Academic institutions and institutions have conducted substantial studies of different oceans, and information is widely accessible for those who want to learn more about this.

In addition to that, it’s always best to start them young, that’s why parents and teachers should take their kids or students to educational institutions that are focused on this kind of cause. These field trips offer useful and fun ocean facts that students will find incredibly interesting.

These educational institutions concentrate on experiential learning as students understand more about ocean creatures not only in the classrooms. Learning is much more successful in the actual setting itself, which in this instance is the ocean.

Such educational institutions provide different activities for the kids of different ages. Year-round programs are tailor-made for the kids who are only 2 years old. Kids, as well as parents and teachers, can get up close and personal with the ocean’s creatures when they board on historic ship replicas. It is an adventure that could be educational and enjoyable for everyone.

For many who are interested in learning more about the ocean, getting on a modern day marine vessel can definitely be worthwhile. The marine vessels used by these institutions have its own devices that will aid in teaching guests about the dynamics of the ocean biome. The equipment may include computer systems, fish tanks, microscopes, and also other high tech devices.

These devices help guests in learning about diverse ocean creatures, such as plankton, whales, and fish. The vessel is also employed to analyze the deepest regions of the ocean and the species that reside there. Moreover, exceptional programs are also included in this cruise that’s held during the night or during the migration season of different whale species.

These educational institutions frequently have exhibits that are accessible to anybody during certain parts of the year. Priority is given to kids that will visit on schooldays, however. In addition to that, festivals celebrating marine creatures such as sharks and dolphins are held at these institutes. Kids can collect unique ocean facts from these programs to help them understand the significance of saving the ocean.

Progress doesn’t necessarily mean destroying a life for the advantage of another. That’s why it is crucial for everybody to do their part in preserving the oceans while there is still time. Education and learning can help men and women understand more about this habitat and cause them to contribute their own little acts of kindness to help preserve this planet that people share with these creatures.

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Ocean Facts: Marine Life in the Pacific Ocean

The Pacific Ocean is the greatest illustration of marine biodiversity in this world with its vibrant population of whales, sharks and fish. That’s why it is very important conserve this diverse marine life through education.

If you would like understand everything with regards to the ocean and marine life, the best place to begin with is the largest ocean on earth, the Pacific Ocean. It covers about 135,663 kilometers of coastline and about 28% of the world’s surface. It stretches through the coastlines of continents such as North America, South America, Asia, and Australia. The Mariana Trench is the deepest portion of any ocean on earth with a depth of 36,201 feet. Numerous islands also dot this wide ocean, which includes Tahiti, Fiji, and Hawaii.

Because of its vastness, the Pacific Ocean is additionally the place to find numerous sea animals. It is one of the most diverse habitats in this world as you’ll find whales, dolphins, fish, and crustaceans here. From the most fearsome sharks to tiny planktons, you will find a diverse assortment of ocean life in this part of the world. This huge number of marine life helps make this ocean among the finest sites for biodiversity on earth.

Just what sorts of sea animals is found in the Pacific? On the topmost tier of the food chain is the whale. The blue, humpback, and sperm whales are just many of the beings which thrive in this ocean. These gentle beings are important in the environment and diversity of the Pacific. Krill, plankton, as well as other tiny fish are a significant part of the diet of the gentle giants, however the killer whale can consume other whales and seals. Sadly, a few of these sea animals are on the brink of extinction.

Various types of sharks also call the Pacific Ocean their home. These kinds of predators are sometimes misrepresented in movies and in books, and this has sometimes added to the species’ vulnerability and near extinction. Its skin comprises of cartilage material (a stuff that is present in human noses and ears), which makes it very hard to cut into.

The Pacific Ocean is also home to a lot of types of fish used in industrial fishing which includes salmon, sardines, and mackerel. Extraordinary kinds of fish such as the Cocinero, Hawaiian ladyfish, and Bering flounder are also found in this ocean. This kind of marine life feeds many people, which is one of the reasons why it is really worth protecting.

The world’s greatest coral reefs are also in the Pacific. These coral reefs are the place to find a diversity of ocean life, which is why a lot of energy is invested in preserving them. Reefs can take thousands of years to develop plus some have even taken up to millions of years to build. The Pacific Ocean is home to wonderful coral reefs such as the ones situated in Australia, New Caledonia, and Papua New Guinea. These reefs contain huge ocean life which needs to be preserved.

The Pacific Ocean isn’t just a large, blue, and vacant space. It’s full of sea animals as well as other organisms that contribute so much to the harmony in the eco-system. We need to understand the value of the ocean and the marine life for us to learn ways to safeguard our heritage for ourselves and for the future generation. Preserving this vast collection of ocean life needs to be one of the top priorities in our preservation efforts, and education plays a large role in this. With the right education, we may just be able to preserve many of the sea animals on the brink of extinction these days.

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Organic Sunscreen – Are Biodegradable and Eco-Friendly Sunscreens Better For You and the Earth? By Brenda Wollenberg

Short answer, yes. Organic sunscreens are absolutely best for you, your family and the environment. The long answer, however, involves defining what an organic, biodegradable and eco-friendly sunscreen looks like, determining why its use is so important and then figuring out which are the best organic sunscreens to buy.

Organic vs. Certified Organic

For the most part, you will be hard-pressed to find a certified organic sunscreen. Organic certification standards for any of the most highly regarded organizations such as the USDA (US Department of Agriculture), IFOAM (International Federation of Organic Agriculture Movements), Canadian Organic Regime (Canadian Food Inspection Agency) and ACO (Australian Certified Organic) require qualifying products to have a certain percentage (i.e. usually 95% or more) of ingredients that have been grown and processed without the use of synthetic chemicals, pesticides, herbicides or GMOs.

Because two of the most effective and eco-friendly sunscreen ingredients are zinc oxide and titanium dioxide-neither of which are grown and therefore neither of which can be certified organic-sunscreens using these two minerals as a way of blocking and scattering UVA and UVB rays, cannot be certified organic. That means for sunscreens, my usual “buy certified organic” skin care products recommendations need to be modified.

Since it is virtually impossible to make a natural, effective certified organic sunscreen, look instead for a sunscreen that falls within the following guidelines:


  • contains no problematic synthetic ingredients (i.e. for further information on ingredients that pose potential problems with issues such as hormone disruption or cancer, check out the Environmental Working Group’s Skin Deep cosmetic data base)
  • contains zinc oxide or titanium dioxide as sun protection ingredients (i.e. sunscreens that use “absorbing” chemicals rather than “scattering/blocking” minerals increase the body’s toxic load)
  • all other ingredients should be natural or certified organic.

Why Biodegradable and Eco-Friendly Matter


Paraben-free and other synthetic chemical-free sunscreens are not only better for your own health-avoiding potentially cancer-causing and hormone-disrupting elements is always a wellness boost in my books-but the oceans and sea life will thank you for using them as well. Every year between 4000 and 6000 tons of chemical-laden sunscreen is washed off vacationers and ends up heavily polluting our lakes and oceans.

The ingredients in most conventional sunscreens act as an oil film on the water, cause environmental damage to sea life in general and are particularly harmful to coral reefs. On the other hand, sunscreens that contain only natural and organic ingredients are biodegradable-break down easily and naturally-and eco-friendly-create little, if any, environmental damage.

Which Sunscreens to Buy?

Looking for a healthier way to protect your skin from excess sun exposure and yet be a good steward of our earth too? Become an astute label reader. Be sure your sunscreen includes protective minerals-zinc oxide is my particular favorite-moisturizing herbs and essential oils, and contains none of the ingredients most damaging to you and the oceans. In particular, that means avoiding four of the sunscreen ingredients that a 2008 study reported in Environmental Health Perspectives showed to be most damaging to sea algae and in turn, our reefs: paraben, benzophenone, cinnamate and 4-methyl-benzylidene camphor.

The products we put on our skin, sunscreens included, have huge impact on overall personal health as well as on environmental wellness too. Choosing a top quality organic sunscreen is simply one of the best ways to take care of yourself, your family and our earth.

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Plastic Pollution – A Ticking Time Bomb For the Ocean

Recently, we saw the Plastiki – a sailboat made out of 12,500 plastic bottles – complete its 15,000 km journey from San Francisco to Sydney. The publicity surrounding this event has been used to highlight the perils facing the oceans and one of them is plastic waste.

A big mess in the oceans
According to the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), over 13,000 pieces of plastic litter the surface of each square kilometre of ocean.

Charles Moore, the scientist credited for discovering the Pacific Garbage Patch said earlier this year: “Humanity’s plastic footprint is probably more dangerous than its carbon footprint.”

We’ve heard of the Pacific Garbage Patch, now scientists are warning that a floating mass of scattered refuse extends over thousands of square miles in the remote Atlantic.

Marine life – the victims of our plastic pollution
The NOAA estimates 100,000 turtles and marine mammals are killed by garbage every year. Turtles are particularly vulnerable as they cannot distinguish between jellyfish (their staple feed) and plastic.

Plastic pollution is also a hazard to human safety. Waste can clog up waterways and this can have catastrophic consequences. Plastics were identified as a major contributor to severe flooding in Bangladesh in the late 1990s and in the aftermath, a total ban was imposed on plastic bags.

An expensive mess
Plastic waste is expensive. Plastic products may be cheap to produce – just pennies for a typical shopping bag – but their cleanup (not to mention their effects on human and environmental health) can cost a lot more.

Is biodegradable plastic the solution?
It’s worth bearing in mind how plastics are made. They are petroleum products made from a non-renewable source and dependency on oil is continued with plastic use.

Plastics do not break down easily. The time required for a typical plastic bag to decompose is believed to range from 20 to 1,000 years.

Biodegradable plastics have been around for over twenty years. These are made using products such as corn, hemp and soy. While this is not a solution to the plastic waste problem (because biodegradable plastics can also have an environmental impact), it is a serious consideration within the wider scheme of waste management.

Reduce, reuse, recycle
The fact of the matter is, if you use it, it has to end up somewhere. Only by following the three Rs motto, can the plastic problem be dealt with.

Using less plastic
The simple solution is to not create the waste in the first place.

Is that bottle of soda or water really necessary? Less than 20 per cent of plastic water bottles are recycled. We also have to ask ourselves if we really need those extra household items that won’t be in use for long and will create more waste.

Recycling is everyone’s responsibility
It is estimated that between 3 and 6 per cent of plastics are recycled around the world. There is need for improvement. The mindset has to change from “disposable” to RECYCLABLE.

Companies who have taken initiatives to make their products more recyclable are seeing rewards. At the government level, those municipalities and local governments that have incorporated recycling into their waste management schemes are dealing with significantly less waste going to the landfills.

Consumers have to play their part by making a greater effort to recycle. Too many recyclable items are still going to the landfills.

Dispose properly
We shouldn’t forget this important aspect. Carelessly tossed waste is more likely to end up in the waterways than if it was placed in a disposal unit. 80 per cent of ocean plastics come from land.

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Sunscreen Is Killing The Worlds Coral Reefs
May 8, 2012, 10:47 pm
Filed under: Coral Reef | Tags: , ,

Coral reefs around the world are dying. A new study believes the cause to be due to the chemicals in Sunscreen.

Until recently it was thought that the coral reefs were dying due to some aspect of global warming. However a study by Marche Polytechnic University in Italy has found that ingredients that are usually found in sunscreen can awaken dormant viruses in the algae that live inside reef-building coral species.

It was revealed that four of the chemicals, Benzophenone, a Paraben preservative, Cinnamate and a Camphor derivative, all used in sunscreen to either act as a preservative or as UV filters caused the rapid and complete bleaching of hard corals, even at extremely low concentrations.

These chemicals seem to trigger a reaction that causes rampant reproduction in the viruses causing their algae hosts (zooxanthellae) to explode.

This allows the virus to spread into the surrounding waters. This in turn infects the neighbouring coral growth.

The Zooxanthellae provide the coral with food energy through photosynthesis and this is what gives the coral its vibrant colours. Without them the coral will bleach and die. This will then leave only the skeleton of the coral.

Each year between 4,000 and 6,000 tons of sunscreen is washed off swimmers. In the oceans of the world this puts 10% of coral reefs at risk of sun screen induced bleaching and of course ultimately the death of that coral reef.

So many people these days are conscious of the environment and the ways in which man is damaging the planet. This is just one more example of the chemicals we use in every day life affecting either us or the planet.

Of course for years we have been told that the suns rays are harmful and that we must continually coat ourselves and our children in sunscreen to help to prevent skin cancer. This is probably true but we are saving ourselves in a way that is killing off another species on this planet.

Until someone comes up with a better solution I would recommend limiting sun bathing, especially for children. When at the beach a sun hat, loose cotton clothes and the use of the showers provided at many pools and beaches would help to limit the sunscreen that is getting into the oceans.

In the meantime let us hope that our scientists and researchers are aware of this new problem and take steps to remedy the situation. It is worrying that the chemicals have awoken a once dormant virus in the coral. What might be the long term effects on ourselves.

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