52 Weeks, 52 Challenges: Week 12

Waves Of Change, For Our Oceans

For 52 weeks, we will be introducing a new challenge to better the environment each week. A new goal will be set forth to add on to the previous weeks goal and after one year, you will have 52 lifestyle changes that will better the environment.

Everyone starts a new year with a resolution. But at Sea Voice News, we want everyone’s year to be much bigger than one resolution. Picture this as a snowball rolling down a mountain. At the top, it’s one small singular snowball. But as it starts rolling down the mountain, it adds more and more snow till it becomes massive. Week 1 is the top of the mountain and week 52 is the bottom. By the time we all reach week 52, our snowball will be one big change in the way we live our lives. It will be a real change to fighting the negative impact humans have on the environment.

Each week, our new goal will give us a chance to make a significant impact on the environment while not having to change our lifestyles too much. The reality of our society is that it does not take a lot to make an impact. This challenge will give you the opportunity to set weekly goals and continue to build on the them throughout the year.

So without further ado, introducing the goal for week 12….

Use Eco-Friendly Sunscreen!

As spring temperatures ramp up and summer just around the corner, there is never a better time to try and ensure that all people use Eco-friendly sunscreen.

A chemical in sunscreen is actually contributing to the destruction of the coral reefs as swimmers trying to protect their skin.

The chemical oxybenzone has toxic effects on young coral that causes endocrine disruption, DNA damage and death of coral, among other the problems. Oxybenzone also exacerbates coral bleaching, a process by which coral reject symbiotic organisms and lose their color. Bleaching has been particularly prevalent in recent years due to rising sea temperatures.

Currently, somewhere around 14k tons of sunscreen enters coral reef areas around the world each year, according to the U.S. National Park Service. That’s a lot of sunscreen considering how little it takes to cause toxic effects. According to the new research, toxicity occurs at a concentration of 62 parts per trillion. That’s the equivalent of a drop of water in an Olympic swimming pool, according to study author Omri Bronstein, a researcher at Tel Aviv University.

The immediate thought is that beachgoers are the cause behind the sunscreen pollution but sewage also plays a huge role. Whether you live inland or by the beach, what you put on your body is going to reach our waters. When you shower, it’s going to wash off and end up in our lakes, oceans and rivers. A small amount of these chemicals can cause a lot of damage. As little as 1 drop of oxybenzone in 6.5 olympic sized swimming pools is enough to cause an adverse effect in coral.

In recent year’s coral reefs around the world have seen a major decline due to coral bleaching including a 40% decline in Hawaii, 40% decline in the Great Barrier Reef, a 85% decline in the Caribbean and 99% decline in the Florida Keys. These declines are do to a handful of things including warming temperatures, pollution/ agriculture run-off and the oxybenzone found in sunscreens.

So next time you head to Target to get your sunscreen, make sure you pick out a brand that is eco-friendly does not contain any oxybenzone .

Check out weeks 1-11 below:

Week 1: Go Straw Free!

Week 2: Pick Up One Piece Of Trash Per Day!

Week 3: Stop Using Single Use Coffee Cups

Week 4: Replace Plastic Bags With Reusable

Week 5: Reduce Your Food Waste!

Week 6: Buy Fresh Produce Without Plastic

Week 7: Cut Out Phantom Energy

Week 8: Use Only A Reusable Water Bottle!

Week 9: Bike Everywhere!

Week 10: Reduce Fast Food Consumption

Week 11: Replace Lightbulbs With Energy Efficient Bulbs

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