What is sea-snot crisis?

Turkey is facing a major environmental crisis due to the formation of sea snot over the seas. It causes damage to the ecosystem as the overpopulated algae block the sunlight from entering the deep sea.

But what is sea-snot? 

Sea snot is marine mucilage (thick grey-brown sheet) formed on the sea by living organic materials such as algae. It happens when the temperature of water increases due to climate change and increased water pollution.

In Turkey in 2007, Sea snot was first documented. However, in 2021 the country has faced its major outbreak over the Sea of Marmara near Istanbul. It is the largest sea snot ever recorded. According to experts, if left untreated, then it will soon spread over Turkey’s coastal waters.

How sea-snot is affecting the country and its people?

The main reason behind the formation of sea snot is the result of excess phytoplankton production. It is due to climate change and the uncontrolled dumping of industrial and domestic waste into the sea. This waste releases harmful compounds such as nitrogen and phosphorus into the seawater, which affects marine life.

The crisis also affected the livelihoods of the fishermen. The fishermen pointed out the dumping of industrial and domestic wastes into the sea and how it was poisonous for aquatic life. It reduced the number of fish in the sea, which eventually affected the fishermen economically.

The sea snot over the Sea of Marmara is seen as a massive crisis for the country because it will affect the trade route for the region. The other threat lies if the snot expands to the Black Sea as it will bring enormous trouble to the country.

According to ecologists, this massive outbreak of floating mucilage can cause several water-borne diseases such as cholera. It is also a sign of ecological damage caused to marine life due to global warming and pollution. 

What are the steps taken to overcome this crisis?

To avoid any further spread of this mucilage, the government of Turkey have taken some steps to protect the country’s seas.

The President launched the country’s biggest cleaning drive for the water bodies have. The locals and various NGOs also came together for the cause of the nation.

Turkey plans to reduce nitrogen levels in the sea by 40% to avoid such outbreak in the future.

The environment minister also claimed to turn the sea into a protected area.

Therefore it is our prime duty to protect our environment and conserve it for future generations.

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