Photo Credit: Lisa Lepere We, LeeAnna Kobayashi, Vanessa Rodgers, and myself, Sarah Myhre were brought in to conduct a front end analysis of the impact of marine debris on the Atlantis marine ecosystem. This is photograph of what the ecosystem used to look like. As you can see the beaches are water are relatively clear and the sea life is healthy.
photo credit: NOAA Recently, the ecosystem has been experiencing stress caused by marine debris. Trash is beginning to pile up along the beaches.
Photo credit: Scripps Institute of Oceanography Photo credit: BUCEAA Debris is also collecting in the waters surrounding Atlantis. Shown here are two different types of debris; one consists of fishing gear and the other plastic bottles as well as other trash.
Cartoon credit: a Jessie Peter Design The Atlantis community also began to notice another phenomenon affecting the marine animals and other marine life. The community witnessed birds collecting the trash for food.
Cartoon credit: a Jessie Peter Design They eat it and feed it to their young.
photo credit: David Liittschwager and Susan Middleton from their book &quot;Archipelago: Portraits of Life in the World's Most Remote Island Sanctuary&quot; Carcasses of birds began to appear on the island. What you see pictured here is a fledgling Albatross, which is completely full, but starved to death. You can clearly see lighters, pieces of plastic, bottle caps, and other little odds and ends that do not occur naturally in the bird’s diet and which were impossible for the bird to digest.
Photo credit: NOAA Other problems that the community started to notice were the entanglements of marine animals in derelict fishing gear. Entangled whales and animals become emaciated and slowly die because they are no longer able to catch food. They then become easy prey for other predators. More often they drown or are strangled.
Photo credit: http://www.breathecostarica.com/active/article/marine-debris-project.html Entangled seal
Photo credit: NOAA Entangles seal
Photo credit for all four images: NOAA The top pictures are before and after images. Once the towel is removed, the dead white coral is exposed. The bottom images show plastic caught on a reef and a car tire, which the reef is growing around. The three of us were brought in to analyze this system and propose recommended solutions to restore the ecosystem to health.
Our first step was to identify the different elements of the system and determine how they fit together. The Atlantis Supra System consists of 5 elements. The international government, federal government, local government, media, and the Internet. Interaction among the 3 levels works like a chain-of-command demonstrated by green arrows, with international at the top followed by national and local. The comms going in the opposite direction from local to international is minimal, demonstrated with thinner yellow arrows. A 1-way arrow from the media to the various levels of government demonstrates that the media reports on the actions of the governments. Comms between the internet and the other elements of the supra system is non existent because the internet is a tool the other elements use. Of these five the 3 levels of government impact each other the most. International gov’t: sets laws for ocean as a whole, established maritime boundaries for each country National gov’t: creates legislation to protect and preserve their waters Local gov’t: maintains the land and local waterways of Atlantis so that debris does not pollute the marine ecosystem Media: reports on the actions of the different levels of government Internet: tool to disseminate information used by all elements of the suprasystem
The subsystem is the Atlantis community and all of the intrinsic factors that affect the community. Within the subsystem, the K-20 students, who are the main learners of the system, are still developing their understanding of how the world works and how they fit into it. The system of the Atlantis consists of the marine ecosystem, which is affected by members of the Atlantis community. Scientists, volunteers, fisheries, tourists, and the general population have negative and positive impact on the ecosystem. Negative Impacts: Tourists: disturb, threaten, and damage sea life Fisheries: derelict fishing gear and over fishing Population: pollution Positive Impacts: Scientists: try to diminish human impact on the ecosystem Volunteers: often help scientists in the field and they conduct beach clean ups Tourists: ecotourism is promoting a healthy ecosystem ad teaches people how to do so Fisheries: raising and harvesting fish through aquaculture to help the ecosystem recover Population: some people recycle or make an effort to preserve the ecosystem
They are early adopters in the system. Volunteers are catalysts for change, they are aware of the day-to-day basis of how marine debris is affecting the marine ecosystem. Volunteers advocate for people to be more mindful of trash and how it is disposed of or where it ends up. Volunteers recruit and train more volunteers to help with the process. Volunteers act as process helpers by showing people where the problem is and how to become an active part of the solution. Scientists and marine biology students are solution givers and resource linkers. They conduct research about the effects of marine debris and how it affects the Atlantis community. They produce the solutions to the debris problem. Opinion leaders help the community realize their interrelatedness to the ecosystem and help people adapt the solutions into their lives.
Our gatekeepers are the media, govt. and lobbyists for fisheries. They are often mid to late adopters. They control the flow of info and alter it to fit their perception of the system. Most media outlets do not supply objective info to readers/viewers. The media inhibits the flow of info by lacking a balance of info that is objective. The Govt. employs many scientists and thereby control which studies info is published for consumption by the public. Lobbyists are gatekeepers because they too control the flow of info. Blockers such as fisheries hire lobbyists to promote an agenda and to present a specific side of an argument. Lobbyists for fisheries attempt to convince the Govt. that fisheries should not be limited in where, when and how they fish and what types of fishing gear they use.
Photo credit: NOAA Our blockers are fishermen, tourists and individuals from the community. Fishermen rely on fishing to make a living and therefore are resistant to any change that would require them to alter their routine fishing procedures as they fear it might negatively affect or restrict how much they can catch. Fishermen can be extremely defensive about the trade that many have learned from a young age. Tourists act as blockers since they are primarily concerned with their own recreation and enjoyment. They often neglect to see how their behavior may negatively impact the environment as it might compromise their enjoyment. Individuals within the community can be blockers when they exhibit behaviors detrimental to the marine ecosystem. Often negative behaviors are learned at a young age and the individual experiences inertia to change.
Photo credit: NOAA Changes must be made for the installation process to occur. Communication would be a major factor for incorporating change. This is probably the most difficult of all tasks. When confronted with change people can become rattled and upset. Unfortunately this may include key decision makers whom may be resistant to change. Therefore open forum meetings where the change leaders can openly discuss reasons for change, would be a valuable process. Change leaders would go into Atlantis schools as well as take advantage of public broadcasting for dissemination of info. K-20 students are the future change leaders, gatekeepers and even blockers. To reach the general population, news and other forms or public broadcasting would provide the means to present on the benefits of change. The short-term outcome would consist of more educational outreach through various forms of media (PBS, digital image, Internet, news, etc). Long-term outcomes healthy marine ecosystem.
Photo credit: Melbourne Zoo Fishermen blockers- demonstrate wildlife friendly fishing methods that don’t decrease amount of catch. Tourists- provide educational materials and fines for breaking anti-littering laws. For individuals- incentive to change would be monetary sanctions or fines including charging customers for plastic bags until they remember to bring reusable eco-bags.
Most effective way to recruit change leaders if to enlist volunteers who can be convinced that their efforts are needed to make a difference w/in the Atlantis community. Using the WWW can be a catalyst for recruiting others. Scientists and marine biology students have an intrinsic motivation when it comes to stewardship of the marine ecosystem and therefore do not need to be recruited.
Photo credit: http://www.eoearth.org/article/Marine_debris Long-term maintenance recommendations include international and national policy change about waste management. Waste management should be monitored by scientists with formative and summative evaluations to survey successful implementation of the change.
We utilized the Critical Incident Technique for gathering the information obtained for our Ecosystem project. From the information gathered a hypothesis can be displayed on the critical state of the marine ecosystem. CURRENTLY marine debris affects the health of the Atlantis marine ecosystem by poisoning and killing the marine life within the system while simultaneously destroying the marine habitat. This in turn affects the Atlantis community who depend on the ecosystem for food and to sustain their economy. The general population of Atlantis is unaware of the seriousness of the problem affecting their health and livelihood. Ignorance and indifferent attitudes concerning the marine debris problem inhibit the few, locally and worldwide, who are aware of the issue. So, lets take a look at some of the learner characteristics of this analysis to understand how we might begin to affect the population. Photo courtesy of iamarvin.ca
Learning is influenced by cultural norms and values. Each culture learns using different methods and demonstrates what they have learned in different manners. l Our learners are children to young adults. So let's discuss the characteristics that affect these learners. Physiologically, the learners are in the 5-26 year age range. For this project male to females are about equal. The majority of students are in good physical health, or healthy enough that their physical capabilities are not severely compromised. Photo courtesy of: missico.com and 1000ventures.com
Physiologically, the learners are in the 5-26 year age range. For this project male to females are about equal. The majority of students are in good physical health, or healthy enough that their physical capabilities are not severely compromised. picture courtesy of keralarticles.com
Diverse ethnic backgrounds from all over the world and all levels of the socioeconomic scale. Some families have been in Atlantis for generations and others have recently moved to Atlantis. Middle to higher class students tend to have more of an interest in the environment and volunteering. Student's from the native populations and those from the South Pacific who have more of a cultural connection to the ecosystem, also have an interest in environmental education and the preservation of the ecosystem. In general students from the lower part of the socioeconomic scale have less of an interest in the environment. Females generally become involved in environmental education and outreach projects at a younger age, than their male counterparts. picture courtesy of: montgomery schools
Cognitive abilities are completely independent, however, factors such as socio-economic status, family life, ethnic/cultural background, genetics, and health play a role in a student's cognitive ability. Photo courtesy of:
There is a lack of understanding about how actions directly affect the Atlantis marine ecosystem and subsequently their health. So, they do not understand, but need to that they are personally liable for the maintenance of the marine ecosystem. Most are not receptive to the idea that they are also responsible for helping to maintain a healthy ecosystem. Therefore, emotional images tend to be the motivation students need to become more aware about the debris in the marine ecosystem and the desire to learn what this does to their own health and sustainability. These pictures are courtesy of NOAA and the Affective Domain is courtesy of montgomery schools. The 2 pictures on the left are marine debris from inside the convergence zone you see that Atlantis is in the middle of. The oil covered bird is just another casualty of marine oil spills and dumping of oil in the marine ecosystem.
Atlantis students have different functions in their daily lives: These are just a few of those functions. Some occur on a daily basis, while others happen less frequently.
Our task analysis broke down the specific tasks performed during the particular function of volunteering at beach cleanups: the Atlantis student needs to have a healthy attitude, time, motivation, and an understanding of the health of the marine ecosystem. Participating in the cleanups will result in less trash, good health of the ecosystem, and eventually they become experts about the effects of marine debris on the ecosystem.
Other equipment and resources include: proper clothing and shoes truck to haul trash Patience Perseverance Are two other valuable skills to possess.
Lack of funding to design & develop a marine debris education program that is appropriate to the learning characteristics of K-20 students Need to recruit people to lobby for govt. change in current policies Lack of time and money for various organizations to follow restrictions about trash disposal Lack of vessels, lack of personnel and lack of money to send teams to collect marine debris Tougher regulations requiring fishing vessels to retrieve nets and equipment Lack of time and money to retrieve fishing gear Difficult to recruit beach cleanup volunteers.
Marine debris is poisoning and killing marine life w/in the system while simultaneously destroying the habitat. The general population of Atlantis is unaware of the seriousness of the problem affecting their health and livelihood. The problem is a global one because debris generated thousands of miles away pollutes the shores of Atlantis. Ignorance and indifferent attitudes inhibit the few citizens aware of the issue. Funding to create awareness is grossly inadequate.
The marine ecosystem needs to be cleared of debris to sustain and renew its life. The Atlantis community should be informed of the seriousness of the issue and take responsibility for their marine ecosystem. Their tourist and fishing based economy will benefit from ridding the ecosystem of debris. Addressing the indifferent and ignorant attitudes creates an expanded community knowledge of the marine debris issues. Governmental policies and regulations should be stringent and consistently enforced to help rid the ecosystem of trash.
The general public must be educated on their attitudes, actions and habits impacting the marine ecosystem Research shows that the community does not understand how trash accumulates in the marine ecosystem. Data shows that some in the community are unaware of the long-term negative impacts they are having, and do not care or understand what they can do to combat the debris problem Govt. must contribute money to fund the education process
1) Scientists need to create a program for K-20 schools and institutions about the effects of marine debris on the Atlantis ecosystem and the community. 2) Educators need be trained to deliver a marine conservation and restoration program in schools. 3) The marine debris program should prompt citizens of Atlantis to take an active role in the removal of the marine debris, sustain vigilance, and preserve the ecosystem.
Photo credit: NOAA The first implication is that people must be persuaded to change their habits in order to heal the dying Atlantis marine ecosystem. The second is that the volunteers need to understand that they are catalysts for change within the system. (they clean and recruit other volunteers) The final implication is that the Atlantis community must be motivated to take responsibility for the maintenance of their marine ecosystem, on which they are dependent. (sustenance and economy and people are only as healthy as the environment they live in)
1) Develop a marine debris education program that addresses the different levels of learning characteristics. Along with this program, a trainer program would be included for new instructors. Pro: The program will educate all levels of learners in order to address the critical health of the marine ecosystem. Learners will pass along their knowledge to families, friends, and other community members. Con: There will be a significant price to develop a program of this magnitude. Also, an enormous amount of effort and time needs to be put into a project this large. 2) Marine scientists, their scientific organizations, and the Atlantis community need to lobby for a change in local, national and international government policies on current marine debris issues. Pro: The change in polices would enforce more stringent litter policies, and tougher regulations for construction site barriers. There will be increased regulations for commercial fishermen on net and equipment retrieval, and enforced restrictions on domestic and foreign commercial fishermen caught fishing inside preservation zones. Con: Lobbying for increased regulations will be a long and costly process. Commercial fishing companies will fight the increased regulations, as this is their only source of income. Construction company unions and owners will fight increased regulations because it will cost them a lot of money in purchasing proper barriers and in labor costs. If more stringent policies are passed, more money will need to be allotted to increase the level of enforcement. 3) Communities across Atlantis should hold regular beach cleanups in their areas. Pro: The result of a beach clean up would be safe, clean beaches for citizens to congregate. There would also be less debris entering the ecosystem from the beach. Con: It is difficult to get people to volunteer time to pick up trash off the beach. 4) Send field teams to collect floating marine debris. Pro: Collecting floating marine debris will help with the health of the marine ecosystem by decreasing marine animal entanglements and coral reef destruction. Con: The ratio of debris to field teams limits the field teams to collecting only a few tons at any one time. Weather may also inhibit field teams from going out to collect the floating debris. Unfortunately, only the floating debris can be removed. The field teams cannot remove the debris that lies beneath the surface on the corals unless they have divers, equipment and safe weather conditions permitting removal. 5) Developing and delivering local broadcasting through media such as PBS, radio, Internet, and inside bus and taxi services would effectively stimulate emotional responses through visual, auditory and an affective means. This in turn demonstrates to citizens the frailty of their marine ecosystem. Pro: Broadcasting through several means will reach the majority of the citizens of Atlantis. Emotional responses could have an effect on citizens demanding cleaner beaches, and tougher regulations in order to help save their ecosystem. Broadcasting through media such as PBS, and the Internet is relatively inexpensive and could result in funding for this type of advertising. Volunteers would be used as the catalysts for advertising to reduce costs. Con: Broadcasting through radio, bus and taxi services can be quite expensive. There is no guarantee that eliciting emotional responses will have enough of an affect to grant funding for this type of broadcasting. In order to efficiently and effectively reach the desired outcome of a healthy and sustainable Atlantis marine ecosystem, the Atlantis community needs to understand there is no one cause of marine debris. Atlantis needs to become a healthy and sustainable community. Therefore, it cannot be overstated that all of the recommended solutions must be implemented. Each solution targets a different issue concerning marine debris, but all are equally as important as the next.
The Atlantis marine ecosystem is experiencing unhealthy levels of marine debris predominately produced by the community, but also by the national and international communities. The effects of marine debris are an unnecessary and completely preventable outcome of the current actions of these communities. A formalized standard of enforcement of more stringent polices will force a needed change in the commercial industry. Lastly, it is clear that the recommended solutions will also bring about a change in attitudes of the community, and thus a change in the health of the marine environment.
ETEC 600 Dr. Catherine P. Fulford LeeAnna Kobayashi Sarah Myhre Vanessa Rodgers
Government policies and regulations about ridding ecosystem of trash are enforced
Funding is adequate
The Discrepancies Inputs Processes Products Outputs Outcomes What is... Marine Debris People litter or dispose of trash recklessly There is trash everywhere Anti-littering laws are enforced 10% of the time The marine ecosystem is filled with trash and is unhealthy What should be... No Marine Debris People dispose of trash in a responsible environment friendly manner A hefty consequence for littering and there is no stray trash Anti-littering laws are enforced 100% of the time The marine ecosystem is devoid of trash and is healthy