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Climate change ‘sea snot’ killing Turkey’s Marmara Sea

Climate change ‘sea snot’ killing Turkey’s Marmara Sea

Mass fish deaths have been observed with environmental experts warning of possible disease outbreak such as cholera.

Balikesir, Turkey – Omur Karisik has fished in Turkey’s Sea of Marmara since he was 15 years old, just as his father did before him.

But the water has been taken over by a sticky web of “sea snot” caused by rising sea temperatures and ineffective waste management, and if something is not done soon he cannot see a way he can carry on.

The current flare-up, which began in December, is the inland sea’s largest recorded marine mucilage bloom and it is devastating the ecosystem, from the shores of Europe’s most populous city, Istanbul, to the Aegean, a popular spot with holiday-makers.

Environmental experts say the slimy substance is the result of an overproduction of phytoplankton, caused by climate change and the dumping of household and industrial waste.

Divers have observed mass fish deaths and say corals and sponges are fully coated in clumps of organic matter, often fatally, while ugly brown froth is being coughed up to the surface like phlegm from a diseased lung.

The phenomena is a stark warning to the world – a glimpse into an imminent future if humans continue to push the planet’s life support systems to the edge.

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