Environmental science.traceypercifield.unit1ip


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Estuaries- Houston-Galveston's Bay and the Gulf of Mexico

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Environmental science.traceypercifield.unit1ip

  1. 1. Running head: THE TEXAS COASTLINE ESTUARY 1 The Texas Coastline Estuary Tracey Percifield American Intercontinental University
  2. 2. Running head: THE TEXAS COASTLINE ESTUARY 2 AbstractThe Estuary is an important part of our survival and well-being and allows us to import andexport goods through the world. It is also important because it supports life species such asplants, animals and sea life that provides us with food and continuing growth for reproduction ofwildlife. Texas Coastline is the largest in the United States and serves for both importing andexporting of goods and also provides nursery of animal reproduction and for harvesting seafoodfor our consumption. This ecosystem is guarded and is maintains to ensure life flourishing and abalance is important to maintaining our world and environment.
  3. 3. Running head: THE TEXAS COASTLINE ESTUARY 3 The Texas Coastline EstuaryThere are many Estuaries in the world and they are important not just as a way of transportationbut that of our ecosystem. Since rivers of fresh water leads to the bay and mouth of the ocean andmixes and combines together creating perfect conditions for sustaining sea life and rebirth of thecycle of life it is important to understand how this works and educate everyone how to protect it.The Houston-Galveston Texas Coastline is the second largest and busiest in the United Statesand is connected to the Gulf of Mexico and is surrounded by sub-tropic marshes, prairies on themainland. It is the biggest estuary for harvesting sea life with the exception of Chesapeake Bayand in the 20th Century boomed because of the oil industry creating one of the largest and busiestports in the United States. This is also important because of pollution and chemicals in ourecosystem and the Houston-Galveston Estuary is made up by four bays; East Bay, West Bay,Galveston Bay and the Trinity Bayand fed by the Trinity River and San Jacinto River. The baycovers 600 square miles and is 30 miles long and 17 miles wide (Gulfbase, 2012).When thinking of Texas Coastline Estuary and the Bay of Galveston and Port of Houston weneed to look at some of the Abiotic or things of non-living things that affect our Biotic livingecosystem and how these effects our well-being of life.Our wetlands have issues which hold run-off of pollution which circulates through the marshlands and freshwater wetlands and act as afilter of this pollution before it reaches the bay and then carried out into the Gulf of Mexico(GBEP, 2004). This is a great concern since we drill and produce oil and petroleum products and chemicalplants and with both of these production plants there are chemicals that escape regardless of thestrict Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and our wetlands are the filter for thosecontaminants which otherwise would go directly into Galveston Bay and into the Gulf of
  4. 4. Running head: THE TEXAS COASTLINE ESTUARY 4Mexico. Even though our marshes and prairies and land absorbs these chemicals they causeproblems for our nesting wildlife and affect their migration and breeding of the birds, turtles andsea life that we consume and harvest for food. The chemicals that we let into this system andcause pollution by the release of chemicals and that of pollution of man further polluting trashinto our marshes, forest and prairies affect our bay and gulf by causing hypoxia in our water orlack of oxygen and causing growth of bacteria in the water affecting mutation and death of thesea life and causing freshwater to be unsafe for drinking by chemicals seeping in the ground. Weneed to understand our affects that we cause on our environment and always be aware of them toenableus to understand the great lengths we must go through to protect the Estuaries (Roehrborn,2006). On the other hand we can look at all the wildlife, sea life and plant-grass lands and look howvaluable they are for the survival of our ecosystem and why they should be protected andsafeguarded. We rely on the wetlands to grow and flourish during the summertime and duringthe winter months they start withering and bacteria, algae and fungi breaking them down andturning them into food for worms, crabs, shrimp, crawfish and fish providing their nourishmentand growth. The cycle continues by the multiplying of them enables the birds, turtles and biggerfish to feed off of them continuing the cycle of life and life of reproduction and thus we feed onthis chain and cycle to sustain our needs. If there is a break in this cycle then all areas in ourenvironment and Estuary are affected and alterations causing malnutrition, mutation, lack ofoxygen which affects life and growth to all and trapping more carbon dioxide in the water andchanging the nitrogen causing even death for species or change in nesting and nursery(Marinebio, n.d.).
  5. 5. Running head: THE TEXAS COASTLINE ESTUARY 5 When this the Estuaries are affected then it takes all agencies, organizations and peopleworking together to clean up the trash, the chemicals, water recovery and replenishing thewetlands, marshes and prairies to return them back to the original condition or as close to theiroriginal condition as possible before the damage of it. Use this is done then it is constantly watchand tested and tracked for many years to ensure the survival of it and the ecosystem that surviveson the Estuaries (GBEP, 2004).
  6. 6. Running head: THE TEXAS COASTLINE ESTUARY 6 REFERENCESLinda Rae Boerhborn. (2006, December)., seasonal analysis of abiotic factors impactingphytoplankton assemblages in offatts bayou, Galveston, texas, [Web log message]. Retrievedfrom http://repository.tamu.edu/bitstream/handle/1969.1/ETD-TAMU-1177/ROEHRBORN-THESIS.pdf?sequence=GBEP. (2004)., Galveston bay, [Web log message]. Retrieved from http://www.gbep.state.tx.us/estuary-program-overview/what is.aspGulfbase. (2012, January 7)., Gulfbase – Galveston bay, [Web log message]. Retrieved from http://www.gulfbase.org/bay/view.php?bid=galvestonMarinebio. (n.d.)., estuaries, marshes and mangroves, [Web log message]. Retrieved from http://marinebio.org/oceans/estuaries-salt-marshes-mangroves.asp
  7. 7. Running head: THE TEXAS COASTLINE ESTUARY 7