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Recently, Girgaum Chowpatty, a famous tourist spot in South Mumbai, saw big, black oil-emanating balls “tarballs” lying on its sandy beach.
What are Tarballs?
=> Tarballs are small light-absorbing, carbonaceous particles formed due to the burning of biomass or fossil fuels that deposit on snow and ice.
=> They are also formed by weathering of crude oil in marine environments.
=> They are transported from the open sea to the shores by sea currents and waves
=> They are usually coin-sized and are found strewn on the beaches. However, over the years, they have become as big as basketballs and can weigh as high as 6-7 kgs.
=> Tarballs travelling towards the coast can get stuck to the fishing nets installed in the sea, making it difficult for fishermen to clean.
=> In addition, it could affect marine life, especially filter feeders like clams and oysters.
=> Tarball pollution is a major concern to the global marine ecosystem.
Tarball cases in the past:
=> Noted cases of tarball occurrences have been witnessed at Goa beaches since 2010, in South Gujarat, Mangaluru and at Los Angeles beaches
=> There has never been a case of a beach closing down due to tarballs in India.
By: ASRAF UDDIN AHMED ProfileResourcesReport error
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