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Making Strides for the Oceans to Thrive

            Critical to life, essential for habitation, used by all, owned by none; without this resource life would not exist, as we know it. This extremely important resource is the Ocean. The oceans are the "lifeblood of planet Earth and humankind"0. In all, the oceans are the Earth's biggest life support systems. Our society depends on much from the oceans and because they are so important it is necessary to explore all they provide. They contribute to the air we breathe, the water we drink, food we eat, and also provide recreation. Specifically, the oceans provide a sixth of the animal protein people eat and also absorbs the carbon dioxide from the atmosphere, which helps to reduce the impact of climate change. As a result of the large dependence on the ocean, we have contributed to the reduction in biodiversity and degradation of marine life. Our oceans are ever so important to our society but are not treated as such. The Oceans are included in a group of shared international and global resources, universally known as the global commons. In order to be considered part of the global commons, four criteria must be met. There must be a resource (replenishable or depletable) people who share the commons (users), rules to govern access to and benefit from the commons, and it must hold some value for being preserved and protected2. As a society are obligated to protect the oceans for now and future use, however, today we are too consumed with our benefits from the ocean that we are neglecting on our part in the relationship. .
             The Oceans are such an important resource because they are crucial to survival. Our society is linked to the ocean in five ways. First, the air we breathe connects us; our oceans produce roughly half of the world's oxygen. Second, the oceans provide us with seafood and other ingredients like peanut butter, and soymilk. Third, there are items like shampoo to medicines that fight Alzheimer's and viruses that have ocean ingredients.

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