Current Situation.samples - Joint School District No. 2

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8 Νοε 2013 (πριν από 3 χρόνια και 7 μήνες)

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Current Situation

Stem cell research has been claimed to lead to the medical treatment of the future. Stem cells have the ability to be
developed into many types of tissues that exist in the human body. With advancements in this area, doctors would have
potential to cure a vast array of diseases, conditions, and illnesses. Some of these conditions have been untreatable in the
but with stem cell treatment it is plausible that blindness, deafness, paralysis, and other disabling conditions, could b
e treated.
However, debate and arguments over the ethics behind this research have hindered advancements and treatments. More
specifically, the debate involves research involving the use of embryonic stem cells. The single most important stem cell deb
oncerns the moral status of the embryo versus the search for potentially life
saving cures (Thompson, 2010). Meaning, the
debate is over whether or not it should be allowed for an embryo to be aborted, theoretically aborting a life, to potentially


Research on one kind of stem cell

human embryonic stem cells

has generated much interest and public
debate. Pluripotent stem cells (cells that can develop into many different cell types of the body) are isolated
from human embryos that are a few days

old. Pluripotent stem cell lines have also been developed from fetal
tissue (older than 8 weeks of development) (NIH Stem Cell Information Home Page, 2010).

In 2006, a survey of 1,002 U.S.

adults was produced asking the question, “Do you think medical research using stem
cells obtained from human embryos is morally acceptable or morally wrong?” The pie chart below shows the results. 61
percent replied morally acceptable, 30 percent morally
wrong, and 9 percent gave no answer or refused to answer the question
(Gallup, 2006).

Today, there is much research being done that involves embryonic stem cells and the advancement of their potential
uses. Several colleges and universities are performing

such research including Harvard, Stanford, University of Wisconsin, and
the University of Utah. All of these institutions have a common goal; to research the areas involving stem cells that have th
greatest possibility of impacting and improving human li
fe. They believe this research will produce the tools and medical
treatment of the future that has the potential to influence and save millions of human lives.


Current Situation

Two percent of the Earth is coast and 60 percent of the world’s population lives on those coasts. In ten years that
number is believed to expand to 75 percent of the population. A growing reliance on oceans for national security
, economic
development, public health, and safety and quality of life is occurring in the United States.

Even though the Oceans Act of 2000 (Pub. L. 106
256) has been around for 10 years there are additional acts that
have been made to help contribute to
reach the goals of the Oceans Act. The most recent addition is President Obama’s
Interagency Ocean Policy Task Force (IOPTF). There are five specific objectives of the IOPTF. The first is an ecosystem
based management which acts as a foundational principle

for complete management of the ocean, coasts and Great Lakes. The
second is coastal and marine spatial planning which is used to resolve emerging conflicts and ensure that shipping lanes and
wind, wave, oil and gas energy development do not harm fisheries

and water quality. The third is improved coordination of
policy development among federal state, tribal, local, and regional managers of ocean, coasts, and the Great Lakes. The fourt
is to focus on resiliency and adaption to climate change and ocean acid
ification. The fifth is to pay special attention to policies
needed to deal with changing arctic conditions. Nancy Sutley, the chairman of the President’s Council on Environmental
Quality, describes the plan as a “more balanced, productive, and sustainable

approach to using managing and conserving ocean
resources.” She also said it would set up “a comprehensive national approach to uphold our stewardship responsibilities and
ensure accountability for our actions” (Clayton, 2009).

Every year the Joint Ocean

Commission initiates the U.S. Ocean Policy Report Card. The past few years the United
States has not gotten a grade any better than a C. Andrew Rosenberg, professor of natural resources at the University of New
Hampshire says that “we have been managing b
its and pieces of the ocean for a long time, but while some good has been done
on pollution and resource management, it hasn’t been sufficient.” Professor Rosenberg is also the adviser to the President’s
Ocean Task Force (Clayton, 2009). The conditions of
our oceans will not improve until someone puts some effort into keeping
our oceans clean and safe.

On September 26, 2008 the National Sea Grant College Program was passed by the Senate. This program was put into
place to support education, research, traini
ng, management of the oceans, coastal areas, and major lakes. The students involved
in the program will create models of the oceans, study coastal hazards and ecosystems, and work on marine biotechnology, and
much more. The National Sea Grant College Progr
am was put into place in hopes of developing individuals who are
knowledgeable in future marine protection.

The Coastguard of the United States has been presented with new occupations. They are now in charge of marine
debris management. The Coastguard is c
oming up with new systems of tracking, disposing and preventing further release of
marine debris.

There are seven main problems for our oceans now and in the future. Number one is overfishing. Overfishing can
result in extinction of a species. Not only wo
uld the fish being caught go extinct but the other marine animals that eat them
would have a very high chance of going extinct as well. The methods used for fishing are also a problem. Bottom trawling is
one of the most destructive. This method ruins the s
ea floor habitat and catches too many unwanted fish and animals that are
just tossed aside.

Number two is that the most important ocean predators are being killed only for their fins. Fishermen are catching
sharks, chopping of their fins, and throwing the
m back into the ocean where they are left to die. When there are fewer sharks,
the species of fish they eat overpopulate which is very destructive to the ecosystem.

Number three is ocean acidification. This is when the ocean absorbs CO2 through natural pr
ocesses we are pumping it
into the atmosphere through burning fossil fuels. The pH balance is dropping very low and will keep dropping to the point
where marine life will struggle to stay alive.

Number four is dying coral reefs. Coral reefs are vital for
our oceans. Most of the marine life lives in or around coral
reefs. The biggest cause of the absence of coral reefs is global warming. Pollution is also at fault. Not very many people kn
that coral reefs are actually living organisms that support other m
arine life forms. Smaller fish are the main species that inhabit
these areas but larger fish, turtles, and sharks share the area for food. Although coral reefs comprise less than 0.5 per cen
t of the
ocean floor, it is estimated that more than 90 per cent o
f marine species are directly or indirectly dependent on them.

Number five is the growing amount of ocean dead zones. A dead zone is a section of ocean with no life because of the
lack of oxygen. Again global warming and pollution are the main culprits. Th
ere are over 400 known dead zones and that
number will keep increasing over the years. Studies have shown that reducing and eliminating the use of fertilizers and
pesticides could help prevent the occurrence of dead zones. This is because our garden chemic
als run off into the ocean can
spread fast by catching a ride on the currents.

Number six is mercury pollution. Mercury that goes into the oceans is mostly coming from coal plants. That coal
eventually gets to the ocean where smaller organisms absorb the m
ercury. Those smaller organisms are eaten by bigger fish
and those fish are eaten by even bigger fish which eventually end up on our tables for dinner.

Number seven is the North Pacific Gyre, also known as the Great Pacific Garbage Patch. This is a pile o
f trash that is
floating around in the middle of the ocean. It is so large it can be seen from space. Most of the trash is made up of plastic

floating on or just beneath the surface. It is mostly plastic because plastic cannot decompose. It only break
s into smaller pieces.
Plastic waste kills up to 1 million sea birds, 100,000 sea mammals and countless fish each year. Plastic remains in our
ecosystem for years harming thousands of sea creatures every day. The more we pollute the larger this pile of gar
bage will

This graph shows the percentage of total pollutants that enter the ocean. Thirty percent of the pollutants are sewage.
Twenty percent is air pollutants and another twenty percent is farm runoff. Ten percent is maritime transportation, al
ong with
ten percent of industrial wastewater. Five percent is offshore drilling with another five percent of litter.








Pollutants Entering the Oceans

Farm Runoff