It’s not just a book by Stephen King, it’s an oxygen-starved area in the ocean where nothing can live. Scientists say there are more of these being created than ever before. Fishermen in Martha’s Vineyard are discovering “Sea Balls” that have washed on shore. And that island paradise you dream of visiting? Don’t look too closely.
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Due to increased carbon dioxide emissions, the world’s oceans are becoming more acidic, affecting marine life. And whaling is reducing the number of giant whales that were once eaten by killer whales, leading step by step to a huge increase in the number of sea urchins. These sea urchins are munching their way through the kelp forests of the ocean, destroying the food that supports the fish that provide one of the world’s main food supplies.
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The trash that ends up in the ocean has become a vehicle for the transportation of exotic marine life into new ports. This is threatening global biodiversity, particularly in the Southern Ocean.

David Barnes of the British Antarctic Survey (BAS) made a 10-year study of human litter, mostly plastic, that washed ashore on 30 remotes islands, from the Arctic to the Antarctic. His team found that litter has almost doubled the spread of alien species in the subtropics and more than tripled it at high latitudes.
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Cathy Zollo writes in the Naples (FL) Daily News that commercial fishermen along the Southwest Florida coast are reporting a massive dead zone that contains no marine life in an area of the Gulf of Mexico that has traditionally been a rich fishing ground. They want scientists and government agencies to find out what?s causing it, but scientists are baffled.

?It?s killed a lot of the bottom because recently a lot of little bottom plants are coming to the surface dead and rotten out in the Gulf,? says Tim Daniels, a Marathon Key fish-spotting pilot who has been flying over the Gulf for more than 20 years.
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