Baltic Sea "Dying" from Lack of Oxygen

Baltic Sea

It’s not only the Gulf of Mexico that’s suffering from “dead zones” caused by  excess nutrients, such as nitrogen and phosphorus used as fertilizers.

Marine dead zones are spreading in the Baltic sea, and that could cause the entire ecosystem to collapse for lack of oxygen.  Dire warnings from Lasse Gustavsson, Swedish head of the World Wildlife Funds branch in Sweden.

As excess algae and other organisms die and sink to the bottom, decomposition takes place and all available oxygen is consumed by bacteria in a process called eutrophication.

The WWF says the dead zones around the world have increased from 44 in 1995 to 269, covering a total of some 27,000 square miles.  10 of those dead zones are located in the Baltic Sea alone.

Since the Baltic is a semi-enclosed body of water, it takes longer to flush out toxic and other harmful substances, putting it at greater risk of ecosystem collapse.

Officals are demanding a reduction of emissions, especially from agricultural areas around the sea.

Relative Stories on dead zones:

Chinese Pollution Can Be Reversed

Red, Green and Blue: Ethanol: Fuel of the Future or Ponzi Scheme

Floodwaters to Increase Mexican Gulf Dead Zone

Image Credit:  Scanpix

Source:  The Local

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