When you think of coastal ecosystems, a region of thriving life generally comes to mind. This image, however, is being slowly corrupted because of human activities. The “life” out of these zones is being sucked out, creating what is referred to as “dead zones”.
Can coasts die? In a way, the life associated with coasts, human activities dependent on coasts are directly because of the organisms that live there. Take these away, and not only does the natural ecosystem collapse, but human economic activities like fishing and tourism will also fall apart. That may not seem like a big deal, but coasts play a huge role in our economies (see here and here for more). Continue reading Coastal Dead Zones: Killing coastal ecosystems worldwide
When you think about going on a holiday, one of the first things that comes to your mind is the beach. Be in Goa, Andaman, Pondicherry, Miami, Sydney or the amazing beaches of France, it seems to attract everyone (63% Europeans prefer the coast as a holiday destination). A thriving tourism industry exists in almost every beach in the world. Whether you want to simply bathe in the sun or do the more adventurous stuff like surfing and scuba diving, beaches appeal to everyone’s interests. In fact, coastal and marine tourism is the fastest growing sector of tourism in the world!
What many people overlook is the effect it is having on the coastal ecosystems. In fact, this is one human activity that does not only harm the coasts; it has a few good effects as well. Let’s take a look at that in this post.
Continue reading How does tourism affect the coastal ecosystems?
In a previous post, I talked about how climate change is a major threat to the coastal ecosystems of the world. But I also said that that’s not the only threat….
Truth is, most of the effects of climate change can be buffered by the ecosystem itself. That’s because climate change is not a new phenomenon. Ecosystems of the past have learnt to deal with it and have even survived it. The real reason why the current climate change poses a threat is that it is coupled with something that has never happened before in geological past: human effect.
Humans possibly pose a bigger threat to the coastal ecosystems than climate change, because our intervention is more direct, more rigorous and more continuous…
In this post, I will specifically look at the effect of human habitation on coastal ecosystems.
Continue reading Human habitation in coastal environments
The narrow zones of the world where the land meets the sea hosts some of the most diverse ecosystems in the world. Coastal wetlands, estuaries, backwaters, deltas, lagoons, reefs, bays all come under a broad term called coastal ecosystems. Together, they add up to 1.6 million kilometers. of coastline. Each one is unique, but has certain common factors:
- These ecosystems are very, very beneficial to all forms of life, including humans.
- These ecosystems are very, very sensitive to environmental changes.
- Thus, they are very, very vulnerable to external stresses.
The coastal ecosystems today are threatened by two main forces; climate change and human activities. In this post, I’m going to take a look at the major influences that climate change has/will have on these fragile and massively important parts of the world.
Continue reading Coastal ecosystems severely under threat due to climate change