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Alert! Antifouling in Ships Considered as 'Toxic Time Bomb' to Our Oceans

Aug 24, 2016 05:25 AM EDT
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Environmental advocate website, Wikigreen released a video that gives in-depth insights about the highs and lows of antifouling.

What is Antifouling?

According to the video release entited "Toxic Time Bomb" sent to Nature World News, antifouling is found on the ship hullsthat will help ships to go faster by keeping these ships free from marine life and can save using much fuel.

In a report published by UK Marine Special Areas of Conservation, being submerged in the watermost of the time, there are of course parts of ships and boats that are "colonized by micro organisms found in an aquatic environment" and this will cause boat hulls to be subjected of infestation. This result is called fouling.

Antifouling Paint a Possible Solution

However, antifouling also contains biocide or toxic materials. According to Wikigreen, every year, there are about one million tons of antifouling being thrown to the oceans. That's too much toxic waste even for humans to take.

Tin is a main component of antifouling products and is considered to be very dangerous that according to the video release, it causes genetic damage to female snaisl. Though in 2008, tin was finally banned to use for antifouling, there are still some who get away with it.

Copper as a Safer Alternative to Tin

Obviously, anything toxic is already a threat especially to the environment. In this case, marine environment will be severely affected as it can kill many marine species. It was even reported that species found underwater -- as deep as Mariana trench -- toxic wastes were found in sea animals due to the dumping of antifouling with a mixture of copper and pesticides.

The video released by Wikigreen also features an issue about Akxo-Nobel, one of the two largest manufacturers of antifouling, and on how shipping industry finds that antifouling is not totally effective in making their hulls clean.

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