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Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Cruise ships massively pollute our oceans and air‏...

Cruise ships massively pollute our oceans and air‏
by D.M. Murdock, Freethought Examiner

According to a petition being circulated on the activist site Care2.com, the world's ocean liners and cruise ships contribute massively to pollution of not only our air but also our seas. The petition, "Tell Cruise Ships to Stop Spewing Filth Into Our Pristine Oceans!," asserts that "the 15 largest cruise ships produce as much air pollution as the world's 760 million cars" and that they "also generate tremendous waste":

"In one day alone, a cruise ship generates 21,000 gallons of sewage, which is often dumped untreated once the ship is three miles from shore, as well as one ton of garbage, 170,000 gallons of wastewater, 6,400 gallons of oily bilge water, and 25 pounds of batteries, fluorescent lights, medical wastes, and expired chemicals."

According to the same source, "A single ocean trip...emits the same amount of pollutants as five million cars on the same route."

Unfortunately, the oceans haven't been "pristine" in a long time, as they are cluttered with trash, including vast, continent-sized islands of garbage called "gyres," doubtlessly contributed to by the cruise ships and ocean liners, as well as the enormous cargo ships and fishing trawlers.

Moreover, a video from a NASA satellite shows huge "pollution trails" and smoke plumes from ships and freighters in the Pacific Ocean:

"The trails are from 20 to 100 miles wide. The pollution from ships lingers over the Pacific every day, though it is usually invisible on satellite photos. This day though, a massive pollution event rivaling that of a nuclear war is plain to see. Without environmental controls on what is burned on vessels on international waters, be it toxic waste or garbage, the polluted sky all comes to shore eventually. The pollution trails shown here are swept inland at Oregon and, as always, they make their way across the United States, to the biggest cities and the most remote wilderness."

I'd love to travel the world and go on numerous cruises, but suddenly I'm glad I'm too poor to have a hand in this immense carbon footprint and mobile garbage spewing.

To quote the petition again: "Stay on the right side of history and stop polluting our world!" And share this important message with as many people as possible!

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