Ocean one-pagers:
Do we know enough of Oceans?

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What is this enigma that oceans present? Man has landed on the moon, sent spacecrafts to the edge of the solar system, but he is yet to fully understand the form and dynamics of the oceans. Do we know enough?
Ocean Titbits
  • 362,000,000 km2 or 71% of the surface of the globe is water. The oceans contain 1,300,000,000 km3 (328,000,000 miles3) of water. The average depth is 4 km. The Mariana Trench is the deepest spot at 11.7 km. It contains 97 % of our planet's free water. The other 3 % is found in atmosphere or on and in land in various forms and stores.
  • There are 300 to 500 million species of organisms in the ocean, yet these vast resources are largely unexplored.
  • The Ocean's biological wealth is concentrated along a relatively narrow strip formed by continental shelves, coastal margins and estuaries. These contain the major fishing grounds, yielding more than 80% of the world's fishing catch. Here, too, are the world's most productive and diverse habitats: mangroves, saltmarches, mudflats, seagrass and seaweed beds, and coral reefs.
  • Globally, seafood represents one-fifth of animal protein and 5 percent of the total protein in the human diet.
  • Global fish production exceeds that of cattle, sheep, poultry or eggs. It is the biggest source of wild or domestic protein in the world. But 15 of the world's 17 largest fisheries are either overfished or in trouble.
  • Any big weather event, such as a hurricane, typhoon, flood or drought, is generated by ocean conditions. Major climate events, such as El Niņo, result from ocean temperature changes. El Niņo refers to abnormally warm ocean surface temperatures and changing wind patterns, which changes weather around the globe.
  • Many scientists belive that coral reefs absorb carbon dioxide in the same way that oceans do. They also note that coral reefs are a breeding ground for a wide variety of marine life.

More facts and figures on the Oceans
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