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Environmental Impact of DI Resin

pdxmonkeyboy

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And people still use cyanide to catch fish and it utterly devestates the reefs. This is why i NEVER buy fish from the philippines.
Ornamental fish harvest is fine in regulated areas and a great source of livelihood for people with few options. In those areas without regulations it is an environmental nightmare. I have seen this stuff first hand.
 
Top Shelf Aquatics

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Except America sends their trash to developing countries. Just cause you see trash in a waterway in Asia doesn’t mean they put it there themselves. Everyone’s always trying to point fingers at other countries. Fact is, we (Americans) make WAY more trash than any other country, and we could change that but we don’t.
The actual problem is:
7.8 billion people imo.
In the US we are 5% of the worlds population and use roughly 25% of the worlds energy.
What happens if, or when, the rest of the world catches up with our useage?
 

adobo

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It's more so that all of these "little" things just compound into us having a greater overall impact than if we were not to be in the hobby. Now of course a lot of the things within the hobby that contribute aren't necessarily specific just to this hobby/industry (shipping demands, water usage, energy usage in general, etc). And like you mentioned there are ways to deal with mitigating some of these effects, which is totally valid. In the end, these things are just inherent impacts that we're going to have as hobbyists, and individually we have to decide how important they are for ourselves. Of course, I'm a hobbyist as well, so I don't want it to sound like I'm talking down to anyone about these issues cause I'm just as much of a contributor as anyone else. These are just things I think we all should be cognizant of, we all definitely have an appreciation for reef ecosystems, so I think it's fair that we're at least acknowledging of our impacts on the environment.

To the point of wild collection, there's not a ton of official regulation regarding documentation of what's being taken from the ocean (though there definitely is some, and certain collectors do a better job than others), so it's hard to even draw conclusions as to the overall impact of that practice; though it's also fair to mention that humanitarian issues exist in this part of the supply chain as well. But I think this is honestly a whole separate topic that has more layers to it, and I'm definitely not really qualified to do anything beyond speculate at this point.

Hope that all makes sense, I'm not trying to be Captain Planet by any means, just trying to shed light on the topic haha
Its a struggle to get educated and then to contribute constructively to a problem when the problem statement is nebulous. "The hobby has a detrimental impact to the environment" is hardly actionable. Let's assume for a moment that this statement is a fact, what can anyone and specifically hobbyists do about it - just quit the hobby entirely?

For anyone who wants to say that the hobby is "bad" for the environment, I would ask that you take the time to enumerate the various reasons why. Because I firmly believe that with a little bit of knowledge, the hobbyists themselves are the key to minimize the environmental impact of the hobby. And perhaps with that same knowledge applied in different facets in life, the overall environmental impact of the hobbyist becomes positive - owing to their participation in the hobby.

The one bit that is hard to grapple with is the use of cyanide to catch ornamental fish. In my view, the hobbyist themselves are the ones driving reform in this practice. The Philippines is cited as an example where the practice of using cyanide to catch live fish is widespread. Owing to several reasons, laws have been enacted that have made it illegal to collect fish using cyanide. Of course, though there is much improvement required in terms of enforcement, hobbyists have contributed significantly in the push to enact controls on how fish are collected. We as hobbyists have also driven a lot of innovation, advanced and growth in the captive bred fish industry. Even if the hobby stopped altogether today, the use of cyanide to catch live fish would still be a problem - this is a technique being used by some to catch fish for food.

So to bring my point to a close, I think it is pointless to say that the hobby is bad for the environment without going into the details. The details help us understand if the hobby is in fact detrimental and help us understand if there are things as hobbyists that we can do to mitigate the impact.
 

adobo

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The actual problem is:
7.8 billion people imo.
In the US we are 5% of the worlds population and use roughly 25% of the worlds energy.
What happens if, or when, the rest of the world catches up with our useage?
The problem isn't the amount of energy we use. Energy is easy to produce. And energy, generally speaking, can be constantly produced. We have virtually an infinite supply of energy. The problem is the process by which we go about producing that energy.

The other problem is that the US consumes a disproportionate amount of harder to renew resources. And generates a disproportionate amount of hard to dispose of/hard to recycle waste. We don't have an infinite supply of fresh water. We don't have an infinite capacity to recycle. And we certainly don't have an infinite supply of places to dump garbage into land fills without having all kinds of other environmental impact.
 
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jRatanak

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Its a struggle to get educated and then to contribute constructively to a problem when the problem statement is nebulous. "The hobby has a detrimental impact to the environment" is hardly actionable. Let's assume for a moment that this statement is a fact, what can anyone and specifically hobbyists do about it - just quit the hobby entirely?

For anyone who wants to say that the hobby is "bad" for the environment, I would ask that you take the time to enumerate the various reasons why. Because I firmly believe that with a little bit of knowledge, the hobbyists themselves are the key to minimize the environmental impact of the hobby. And perhaps with that same knowledge applied in different facets in life, the overall environmental impact of the hobbyist becomes positive - owing to their participation in the hobby.

The one bit that is hard to grapple with is the use of cyanide to catch ornamental fish. In my view, the hobbyist themselves are the ones driving reform in this practice. The Philippines is cited as an example where the practice of using cyanide to catch live fish is widespread. Owing to several reasons, laws have been enacted that have made it illegal to collect fish using cyanide. Of course, though there is much improvement required in terms of enforcement, hobbyists have contributed significantly in the push to enact controls on how fish are collected. We as hobbyists have also driven a lot of innovation, advanced and growth in the captive bred fish industry. Even if the hobby stopped altogether today, the use of cyanide to catch live fish would still be a problem - this is a technique being used by some to catch fish for food.

So to bring my point to a close, I think it is pointless to say that the hobby is bad for the environment without going into the details. The details help us understand if the hobby is in fact detrimental and help us understand if there are things as hobbyists that we can do to mitigate the impact.
I think anyone with a bit of common sense can have a general understanding of how this hobby can possibly affect the environment. If you're looking for a lit. review on the subject I'm sure there are published resources out there for you find. But for the sake of trying to convey my overall thoughts on a forum post, I think I've done a decent job. But again, a lot of issues aren't even exclusive to the activities of a person in this hobby, and it's a culmination of these things that add to our individual impact on the world. As you said, hobbyists have been making good efforts to reduce the direct impact of the industry on the natural ecosystems which is awesome. I don't think there is any straightforward "solution" since there isn't one easily-definable problem.

This thread definitely doesn't need to keep getting blown up, but to find whatever evidence you seem to need I'd look elsewhere than the forums.
 

adobo

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I think anyone with a bit of common sense can have a general understanding of how this hobby can possibly affect the environment. If you're looking for a lit. review on the subject I'm sure there are published resources out there for you find. But for the sake of trying to convey my overall thoughts on a forum post, I think I've done a decent job. But again, a lot of issues aren't even exclusive to the activities of a person in this hobby, and it's a culmination of these things that add to our individual impact on the world. As you said, hobbyists have been making good efforts to reduce the direct impact of the industry on the natural ecosystems which is awesome. I don't think there is any straightforward "solution" since there isn't one easily-definable problem.

This thread definitely doesn't need to keep getting blown up, but to find whatever evidence you seem to need I'd look elsewhere than the forums.
I'm not looking for evidence. I am just asking for specific examples. Assume for a second that I am extremely new and have very little or no knowledge otherwise of the impact my new hobby has on the environment. What are the things to keep in mind?

Giving a nebulous statement such as "the hobby is bad for the environment" is next to useless in terms of educating someone who doesn't know. If this is such common sense, it shouldn't be hard for a marine biologist to explain it to another person who is sincerely trying to learn.

And bringing this topic back to the original thread - is the amount of DI resin being disposed of by hobbyists really a problem? If so, what problem?
 

90's reefer

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The problem isn't the amount of energy we use. Energy is easy to produce. And energy, generally speaking, can be constantly produced. We have virtually an infinite supply of energy. The problem is the process by which we go about producing that energy.

The other problem is that the US consumes a disproportionate amount of harder to renew resources. And generates a disproportionate amount of hard to dispose of/hard to recycle waste. We don't have an infinite supply of fresh water. We don't have an infinite capacity to recycle. And we certainly don't have an infinite supply of places to dump garbage into land fills without having all kinds of other environmental impact.
Very true, at 5% of the worlds population we produce over 40% of the waste.
I think I will look into trying to recharged mine since I do recycle as much as possible.
 

Streetcred

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Society is not eco-friendly in general. At least not here in the US. And I'll admit, I'm one that needs to be forced into it because I tend to take the easy way out...
US society is likely one of the most eco-friendly in the world. Unfortunately, most Americans don't know what is going on in the rest of the world ... I don't mean this in a nasty way but it is what it is, everything has a consequence ... just how far back in the manufacturing processes do you want to go ?
 

chk4tix

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Between our office tank and the many tanks at my house, we use quite a lot. Of course, it exhausts quicker than I believe it should.

Did not know about that, will definitely look it up. Thanks.
I used to change my resin almost every 2 weeks. Then I read someplace that is the a common issue if you’re filter membrane isn’t seated completely. So I opened my canister and made and made sure to force the membrane in as hard as I could. After putting it back together, I refilled my resin and waited to see if anything changed. My previous 2 week time came and passed. Next thing I know I only have to change it about every 8 months.
 

Streetcred

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Just because the hobby may help us find a deeper appreciation for the natural world doesn't take away the fact that it really is a wasteful use of resources. The hobby in itself is 100% a luxury that none of us need to partake in, and the additional energy usage of equipment running 24/7 is a good example of one way the hobby is adversely effective to the environment (unless you run your house on solar I suppose). Obviously I partake in the hobby, so I'm not trying to talk down to anyone or anything, but we gotta keep in mind that this isn't an environmentally friendly activity
The hobby is a glass box full of seawater and some critters ... what you add to it is your business, the more you add, the further from natural you get. In the scheme of things this hobby has little to no impact on the environment, it is dwarfed by everything else including the clothes that you wear and the cell phone in your hand. ;-)
 

MJ in Boise

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Im sure exhausted DI resin isn't as bad as the slurry of chemicals some people use in their tanks.
 

jdstank

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Between our office tank and the many tanks at my house, we use quite a lot. Of course, it exhausts quicker than I believe it should.

Did not know about that, will definitely look it up. Thanks.
I didn’t see anyone mention taking care of the TDS creep issue in an effort to make your resin last longer. If you’re unaware of what that is here’s a video that shows how to address it. You’d be shocked how high your TDS climbs when restarting your system to make water.
 

Spieg

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Fewer water changes would be the obvious way to reduce DI consumption. I believe many people go way overboard with water changes (Yes - I'm speaking to you folks doing daily auto water changes).
 
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topjimmy

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Fewer water changes would be the obvious way to reduce DI consumption. I believe many people go way overboard with water changes (Yes - I'm speaking to you folks doing daily auto water changes).
They are usually doing a 1 to 2 % change daily. How is that worse than 10% weekly?
 

Spieg

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They are usually doing a 1 to 2 % change daily. How is that worse than 10% weekly?
It's not by much. Personally I do routine water change of about 20% twice a year unless there is a reason.
 

Bulk Reef Supply

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@Bulk Reef Supply any chance you can talk to your resin vendor for suggestions and a conversation?
So, our supplier of DI resin does provide us with some of this information as apart of the SDS. Here are some of the highlights that I think would be more helpful towards this conversation.
  • Eco-toxicity - Not harmful to plant or animal life.
  • Biodegradability - Not biodegradable.
  • Bio-accumulation - Insignificant.
  • General considerations - Material is non-hazardous.
  • Disposal methods - No specific method necessary (Keep out of public sewers and waterways).
  • Precautions for landfills - pH of spent resin may be high or low. Resins used to remove hazardous materials may then become hazardous mixtures.
 

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