The Santa Monica Bay Restoration

The Santa Monica Bay Restoration
Pollution is a worldwide catastrophe that contaminates or destroys every living and non-living thing in its path. The earth is designed to constantly balance itself allowing plant and animal life the ability to thrive. Unfortunately when bombarded with chemicals, heavy metals and unnatural human waste, the earth exceeds its critical load and irreversible damage occurs. There are literally thousands of areas that have been negatively effected by the numerous types of pollution. To date there are over four thousand lakes alone where wildlife and human use ceases to exist. Pollution reeks such havoc on communities because it ?knows no boundaries.? Even if one country implements tough emission laws, a neighboring country?s pollution may continue destroying its resources.To exemplify the ever increasing degree of pollution, I will be focusing on the Santa Monica Restoration Project. This project is an ongoing effort to maintain a clean and healthy environment in and surrounding the Santa Monica Bay so that plant and animal life are able to thrive. Unfortunately this project is continuously challenged by numerous pollutants. Pollution is a simplified way of classifying a multitude of harmful acts and elements. The Santa Monica Bay experiences pollution created by auto and homeowners, oil spills and leaks, gasoline and paint contamination from boats, wastewater from two local sewage treatment plants, litter and construction sediment. The goal of the restoration project is double fold. Number one, to clean up the bay in order to bring back plant and animal life that has either died or fled to other habitats, and two to make the individuals and companies who cause the contamination aware of the harmful acts they are engaging in daily.

In many clean-up projects, officials initially point fingers at factories and large corporations assuming large facilities must be the cause of such horrendous pollutants. Unfortunately, what officials have discovered is that although industries do produce large amounts of waste, human activity produces even more. ?Residential and open land uses together comprise ninety percent of the total Santa Monica Bay watershed area, and contribute eighty-two percent of the total runoff and the largest pollutant loads to the Bay.? Auto and homeowners commit numerous actions that hurt the environment unknowingly. Simple acts such as overwatering one?s lawn creates a runoff which cause pesticides and fertilizers to flow into storm drains that empty into the bay. Litter, pet waste and improperly disposed car care products cause the same problem. The American Petroleum Institute estimates that only ten percent of the two hundred million gallons of used oil generated annually by Americans is disposed of properly. The remaining ninety percent is ?Dumped down storm drains, on the ground and in the trash each year.? Single- family residential areas contribute the largest loads of heavy metals to the Bay. Heavy metals are the most dangerous types of air pollutants and include mercury, lead and cadmium.

Adding to the pollutants created by residents, are construction sites, water craft, oil spills and natural seeps and wastewater. Unlike residential waste, all of these sources of pollution are considered legal and no action was taken to stop the companies and or individuals responsible for them until the restoration project began. Although this project is experiencing great successes in restoring plant life and wildlife, it has failed at changing the habits of the public. Companies argue that the waste emitted from their facilities meets all set regulations and that to further purify the waste and excreted material would be too costly. In order to succeed in limiting the pollution created form large companies federal laws with harsher punishments need to be established. At the time companies refuse to listen to the warnings of environmental groups concerning the harmful effects of pollution.

A degree of success has been found in households. Today thousands of people recycle, take shorter showers, avoid toxic products whenever possible, avoid runoff when watering their yards, and recycle their motor oil. Unfortunately, the bay still experiences high degrees of pollutants which discourage human interaction with the bay and its surrounding areas. The feat is convincing the government to increase emission laws and provide companies with efficient methods of reducing the toxins of their waste products.

The Santa Monica Bay Restoration 9.1 of 10 on the basis of 1130 Review.