Garbage Garbage Garbage!

I’m sure most of you guys have heard of the island of trash sitting out in the Pacific Ocean. It is known as the Great Pacific Garbage Patch. Maybe you heard it as a myth, but it is NOT a myth. Not only is the island of trash real, but it is estimated to be twice the size of Texas. This island is created by trash floating out into the ocean being caught by the North Pacific Gyre and getting stuck inside. It has added up tremendously over the years. It is a real problem and I feel that if we don’t do any action about this soon, then it will be too late.

Samples have been done on the water there and some samples found 6 pieces of plastic to 1 plankton. This is devastating since the plankton is essentially the basis of the oceanic food chain. Not only will this effect that ecosystem, but it will effect us. Phytoplankton are an immense contribution to protecting the Earth from too much carbon in the air as they absorb carbon dioxide and they live in mass numbers, but I’m getting off topic, so I will leave you guys at that.

With less plankton in the ocean, that means more carbon dioxide stays in our atmosphere. Think about your trash and where it will eventually ends up. If not in the landfills, then on our precious oceans.

David Dang

Once trash is in, it can NOT get out naturally. Due to the currents vortex-like spinning, it is basically a one way street. Trash comes close to the gyre and eventually gets picked up by the current and then becomes stuck inside.

We could go there and try picking all of it out, but that would costs a lot of resources, and then what would we do with trash? We can’t just put it in a landfill, that doesn’t solve much.

Here are some helpful visuals:

Estimated Size



7 Responses so far »

  1. 1

    shermanj said,

    David, thanks for the insightful post. For a matter of aesthetics, can you find links to photos of the Garbage Pacific Garbage Patch and a map of Texas and then edit your post and embed them into it? Also, you’ve pointed out a major problem, but I’m wondering if anyone (individuals or nations) is trying to fix it and, if so, how?

    • 2

      shermanj said,

      Wow, those images are shocking, especially the map. I had heard about this floating pile of trash before, but that image really puts things into perspective, literally.

    • 3

      jonathanKIM said,

      Considering how much garbage there already is, I really doubt anyone’s going to do anything about it anytime soon. There’s so much garbage that you can’t even see any water, but with a picture like that, I think that some eco-friendly group might do something.

  2. 4

    TannerK said,

    I had never heard of there being such things in the ocean, especially something that large. Its astonishing that we have that much global warming and we arent doing very much to help fix it, We are killing so much aquatic life by having all this in the ocean.

  3. 5

    jonathanKIM said,

    This is the first time that I have seen so much garbage in one place, but to see a person in a canoe rowing through an ocean of garbage… I don’t know what to say.

  4. 6

    RGullett said,

    This is almost unbelievable, but its a real problem. Texas is huge and to think that this mass of garbage is so large it is Texas twice, and its probably growing. This arbage must have been in the ocean for a long time to accumulate like that. Hopefully the oceans are being monitored a little closer now.

  5. 7

    katiep91 said,

    Those images are really disturbing. Another example of waste: Tourists are astounded by the amount of waste in Turkey. The sea in Istanbul, for example smelled disgusting because the public’s garbage would run into the Marmara Sea and the Bosphorus. The attitude was “out of sight, out of mind.” Anyone who felt like swimming in the water could possibly pick up deadly diseases. Thankfully, today they are cleaning up.

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