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SDG14: Life Below Water

How many times have you gone swimming this summer? I think we can all agree that water plays a crucial part in quenching our bodies in these times of heat. Whilst water is key to us humans, there is a whole ecosystem that takes place underneath the water.

Can you imagine a world without oceans, rivers, or dams to swim in and explore? These water sources are home to seahorses, dolphins, whales, corals, and many other living creatures. Water sources are our planet’s life support as they provide water, food and help regulate the weather.

Water sources also provide jobs for more than 3 billion people who depend on marine biodiversity for their livelihood. If we do not stop polluting our oceans, there will be severe problems that affect every person and living creature on the planet.

Pollution poses the greatest threat to our planet and the lives of future generations! Do you ever ask yourself where all the plastic bottles and bags go after you use them? Every year an estimated 5 to 12 million metric tons of plastic enter the oceans.

Carbon emissions produced by human activities, like driving cars, are causing the oceans to warm and increase the acid level in the water. This is extremely bad for animals and organisms that live in the sea, as the acid can break the organisms’ shells and damage coral reefs.

Ocean and land are tightly interconnected. Everything that we do on land has a direct, global, and cascading impact on the ocean. What happens in the oceans affects the entire planet.

All of us need to help to protect our water sources. How you ask, well here is what you can do:

You have to tell all your friends to protect life below water. The first step is to make sure that all young know that all the lakes, dams or any other water source in Rwanda and beyond is treasure. We should all as young people keep water sources safe from pollution or any other pollution potential.

In your community, when you see there is a water source but it is about to be used in a manner that might affect life below it, report it to the authorities. It is key that us was young people act as guardians, not of the galaxy but of our water sources. Do not let anyone get away with polluting water sources or harming the life underneath them.

If you happen to live close to a water source, do not dump rubbish close to it. Also, sure that all the rubbish is away from the water source for the dirty and plastic is not so good for life underwater

So just remember, we need water as humans to survive. With 70% of the earth being water, 60% of humans being water, it only makes sense to protect water sources and what resides beneath them. This way we can ensure a sustainable future for generations to come.

Picture by Luqman Mahoro

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