Water pollution has always been one of the most severe environmental issues on our planet for centuries, threatening millions of aquatic species and spreading disease-causing bacteria to the over 2 billion people who consume contaminated, untreated water. Even though pollution is anything but foreign to us, it still remains one of the most complex and challenging environmental problems to solve, and despite countless organizations and millions of volunteers pitching in to make a difference, pollution is still deadly and widespread. On top of this hazard, global warming has caused worldwide ocean temperatures to increase to a dangerously high level, so much so that in the next 25-30 years, our oceans will be too warm to support coral reefs, which are the basis of all life in the ocean. This places a heavier burden on marine ecosystems as well as poses an imminent threat to billions of marine organisms and ultimately, the survival of humanity. Despite this current calamity, we have made significant progress towards mitigating the devastating impacts of worldwide water pollution and climate change, through establishing thousands of not-for-profit organizations, creating giant machines to remove trash from the oceans, and garnering thousands of additional environmental volunteers each passing day. This influence has even spread to social media platforms like YouTube, where two famous YouTubers (who I’m sure you have all heard about) have decided to take the bull by the horns.
Jimmy Donaldson, also known as MrBeast, is a YouTuber known for his charitable work in donating much of his savings to others, from handing out money on the streets to homeless individuals to donating tens of millions to food pantries. This has earned him a reputation for being a philanthropic, selfless YouTuber who is changing the world for the better, especially in the world of environmentalism. A little over 2 years ago, in October 2019, MrBeast established TeamTrees, an organization that raised over $20 million to plant 20 million trees by 2020, a project that is still going on to this day and continues to plant more trees even 2 years later. Working alongside him in his current and past efforts, as the co-founder of TeamTrees, is former NASA Engineer and science guru Mark Rober, who is famed for his ingenious creations and willingness to build extravagant designs to test the limits of science. Having been a former engineer who was a part of constructing the Curiosity Mars rover, it’s safe to say that Rober knows a thing or two about designing trash-eating robots to help clean Earth’s oceans one piece at a time, which is the main endeavor of Donaldson and Rober’s new environmental fundraiser project, Team Seas. Their goal? To remove 30 million pounds of trash from the ocean by 2022 by raising $30 million from generous supporters. It might sound ludicrous, but Donaldson’s fame combined with Rober’s brains will surely help them accomplish this goal. What’s most important is that this will allow our oceans to heal and restore the lost equilibrium in aquatic ecosystems, a balance that our planet desperately needs.
As of the time this article was written, Team Seas has already raised $16.5 million from generous donors and the total continues to skyrocket each passing day. People from all over the world from different organizations have pitched in to support this meaningful cause, from the CEO of Shopify, Tobi Lütke, donating $1.2 million to members of various Patron communities donating over $500,000, which goes to show the awareness regarding environmental degradation is rapidly spreading as it becomes more serious. But with $13.5 million left to raise and only 5 weeks until the year comes to a close, it’s not too late to contribute to Team Seas. Any amount means more trash that is removed from our ocean, more animals get to live a safe life, more people have access to clean water, and more time to help save our oceans from further harm. Visit their website (link is at the top next to “Sources”) to donate and read about how two YouTube masters are fighting to protect our planet. Hopefully, you will become inspired to take action of your own!
Sources: https://teamseas.org/ & https://www.conservation.org/stories/ocean-pollution-11-facts-you-need-to-know#