What Is the Definition of Marine Pollution?


Quick Answer

Marine pollution is the introduction of harmful contaminants into the marine ecosystem. Oil, untreated sewage and pesticides are just a few examples of the contaminants found in oceans and other marine environments.

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Full Answer

Marine pollution causes many problems for the fish, birds and mammals living in oceans, ponds, lakes, rivers and streams. Animals die as the result of eating foam, plastic bags and other types of marine debris. Some animals have also died after getting caught in the plastic rings that hold packs of soda and beer together.

Oil spills, chemical pollution and sewage pollution have a number of adverse effects on animals. Oil breaks down the insulation some birds and animals use to stay warm. Some animals are also smothered by the oil. Pesticides and other chemicals build up in the fatty tissues of marine animals, affecting their reproduction capabilities. Untreated sewage encourages algae growth, which can have a devastating impact on the plants and animals in a marine environment.

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