Pacific Ocean Pollution AKA The Great Pacific Garbage Patch

So, there is a HUGE pile of plastic floating in the Pacific ocean.

In a nutshell anytime a piece of plastic goes down a sewer or isn't properly recycled it gets swept out into the ocean, gets caught in the currents and ends up in one place. This has been happening since plastic was invented so there is an actual ISLAND of plastic and trash. It's bigger than most states...

The plastic breaks down into smaller parts which the sea life thinks is food. The sea life ends up dying because the plastic clogs their insides. Seals, whales, birds, turtles all get tangled in pieces of plastic line/rope…

If you haven't heard or read about this please check out these links.

http://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2015/aug/23/pacific-ocean-plastic-trash-mapping-mission

http://education.nationalgeographic.com/encyclopedia/great-pacific-garbage-patch/
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Comments

  • brianluxbrianlux Moving through All Kinds of Terrain.Posts: 28,540
    When I see photos like the one at the top of the guardian article you posted, tempo, I wonder how on earth we let this happen. How does so much crap end up in the oceans and on our shores? It's hard to fathom.
    "Hate your job, love your stuff
    If you think that's living, you are
    Wrong, wrong, wrong, wrong"
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  • SmellymanSmellyman AsiaPosts: 3,821
    edited October 2015
    It's why I have gone off plastic or greatly reduce anyway. Like anything it's tough to cut completely. For grocery shopping it's pretty easy. I buy nothing in plastic or use plastic bags on checkout.

    Fruit and veggies wrapped in plastic? c'mon. Milk, egg cartons, condiments etc. There is a lot of simple things you can do to cut out plastic.

    Problem is most people don't give a shit and I am weirdo to a lot of people who just give me condescending looks. Oh well, I will do my part for you self entitled consumer pricks and your stupid narcissistic kids and entire generation of narcissits you are helping raise.
    Post edited by Smellyman on
  • brianluxbrianlux Moving through All Kinds of Terrain.Posts: 28,540
    Smellyman said:

    It's why I have gone off plastic or greatly reduce anyway. Like anything it's tough to cut completely. For grocery shopping it's pretty easy. I buy nothing in plastic or use plastic bags on checkout.

    Fruit and veggies wrapped in plastic? c'mon. Milk, egg cartons, condiments etc. There is a lot of simple things you can do to cut out plastic.

    Problem is most people don't give a shit and I am weirdo to a lot of people who just give me condescending looks. Oh well, I will do my part for you self entitled consumer pricks and your stupid narcissistic kids and entire generation of narcissits you are helping raise.

    Go Smellyman! I can't believe people give you shit for doing the right thing.

    Eggs we have got down by using the same cartons to buy eggs either from friends who have hens or the Farmer's Market. We have a store that dispenses soap and shampoo into your own refillable but not all towns have this (yet, I hope). I never get a bag unless it's used (even then, rarely), and always take my own reusable ones. Milk is tough for me as I don't use the stuff but do use almond milk. I water it down to make it stretch but eventually I do have to toss the damn container. What should I do about that?

    My biggest sin that way is the car. Shit load of plastic. We ride share, group our errand running together, have no drive days as often as possible, maintain the vehicle so that it will last at the very least 300,000 miles (482,803 km) and have a short commute but still, major environmental sin! I would be lying if I said otherwise.
    "Hate your job, love your stuff
    If you think that's living, you are
    Wrong, wrong, wrong, wrong"
    -Juliana Hatfield
    ***********
    M.I.T.S.







  • Caring about your environment, community, oceans, Forrest's and well being of others shouldn't be a "hippie" thing.

    A little bit goes a long way.
  • brianluxbrianlux Moving through All Kinds of Terrain.Posts: 28,540

    Caring about your environment, community, oceans, Forrest's and well being of others shouldn't be a "hippie" thing.

    A little bit goes a long way.

    Absolutely. If anything it should be more a hardcore punk thing.
    "Hate your job, love your stuff
    If you think that's living, you are
    Wrong, wrong, wrong, wrong"
    -Juliana Hatfield
    ***********
    M.I.T.S.







  • eddieceddiec Posts: 3,030
    I was in Thailand recently and the beach areas that aren't cleaned regularly are filled with plastic.

    Also, I remember a few years ago I went shopping at a supermarket at my parents just north of NYC. I had about 5 items and the cashier wanted to give me a plastic bag. I told her I was good, that I would carry them. I'll never forget the look of shock on her face.
  • eddiec said:

    I was in Thailand recently and the beach areas that aren't cleaned regularly are filled with plastic.

    Also, I remember a few years ago I went shopping at a supermarket at my parents just north of NYC. I had about 5 items and the cashier wanted to give me a plastic bag. I told her I was good, that I would carry them. I'll never forget the look of shock on her face.

    That's funny because I know people that EXPECT a bag with their purchases and get angry if they aren't offered one.

    What countries and states have banned plastic bags now?
  • SmellymanSmellyman AsiaPosts: 3,821
    And get your water from faucets!
  • PJ_SoulPJ_Soul Vancouver, BCPosts: 47,767

    eddiec said:

    I was in Thailand recently and the beach areas that aren't cleaned regularly are filled with plastic.

    Also, I remember a few years ago I went shopping at a supermarket at my parents just north of NYC. I had about 5 items and the cashier wanted to give me a plastic bag. I told her I was good, that I would carry them. I'll never forget the look of shock on her face.

    That's funny because I know people that EXPECT a bag with their purchases and get angry if they aren't offered one.

    What countries and states have banned plastic bags now?
    I take (or ask for) bags when they are really good, solid bags because I use them for other things, or when I literally need one at that moment for some reason, but I always carry at least one reusable fabric bag in my purse, so can usually decline plastic. I know a lot of people end up using plastic just because they keep forgetting to bring their reusable ones. Those people should work out a better system so that doesn't happen.
    That said, there are times when I feel plastic is necessary. The main reason would be for raw meat. I'm not going to carry raw meat around with no plastic bag for protection from leakage.
    With all its sham, drudgery, and broken dreams, it is still a beautiful world. Be careful. Strive to be happy. ~ Desiderata
  • my2handsmy2hands Posts: 17,118
    I absolutely believe this exists, not saying any different

    But I have never seen a picture of this massive garbage patch in the pacific?
  • my2hands said:

    I absolutely believe this exists, not saying any different

    But I have never seen a picture of this massive garbage patch in the pacific?

    Just google it. There are lots of pics of it. It's pretty disturbing on how large it actually is...
  • my2handsmy2hands Posts: 17,118
    I've Googled it several different ways and still can't see a picture of it? There are pictures of trash in water, but no photos of the actual patch, which apparently there are 2 of... Nothing from a plane, nothing from space, nothing from a boat cutting through it?
  • rgambsrgambs Posts: 12,234
    my2hands said:

    I've Googled it several different ways and still can't see a picture of it? There are pictures of trash in water, but no photos of the actual patch, which apparently there are 2 of... Nothing from a plane, nothing from space, nothing from a boat cutting through it?

    It seems you are misunderstanding the nature and composition of the "Great Garbage Patch".
    Not your fault, the name is misleading and many sources about it are as well. It isn't an island, or a tangled floating mass of garbage like the descriptions paint it to be. The photos you saw are the reality. Ocean currents push all the trash into zones known as gyres, where the water circulates around and traps the plastic floating everywhere. If you see photos of jars of sample water with bits of plastic floating in it, that is what the density is in reality. Given the vastness of the oceans, it is a much higher density than it looks to the laymen, and ecologically it is a much bigger deal than it appears to be in comparison with the floating dump that most picture.
    Monkey Driven, Call this Living?
  • TL170678TL170678 Near Louisville, in Indiana, closer to KentuckyPosts: 422
    brianlux said:

    Smellyman said:

    It's why I have gone off plastic or greatly reduce anyway. Like anything it's tough to cut completely. For grocery shopping it's pretty easy. I buy nothing in plastic or use plastic bags on checkout.

    Fruit and veggies wrapped in plastic? c'mon. Milk, egg cartons, condiments etc. There is a lot of simple things you can do to cut out plastic.

    Problem is most people don't give a shit and I am weirdo to a lot of people who just give me condescending looks. Oh well, I will do my part for you self entitled consumer pricks and your stupid narcissistic kids and entire generation of narcissits you are helping raise.

    Go Smellyman! I can't believe people give you shit for doing the right thing.

    Eggs we have got down by using the same cartons to buy eggs either from friends who have hens or the Farmer's Market. We have a store that dispenses soap and shampoo into your own refillable but not all towns have this (yet, I hope). I never get a bag unless it's used (even then, rarely), and always take my own reusable ones. Milk is tough for me as I don't use the stuff but do use almond milk. I water it down to make it stretch but eventually I do have to toss the damn container. What should I do about that?

    My biggest sin that way is the car. Shit load of plastic. We ride share, group our errand running together, have no drive days as often as possible, maintain the vehicle so that it will last at the very least 300,000 miles (482,803 km) and have a short commute but still, major environmental sin! I would be lying if I said otherwise.
    My parents have a couple of acres where they live and rather paying $100.00 per month for garbage pick up they just take all plastics (aka milk jugs), paper, and cans to the recycling center every month (it`s free) and burn every thing else in a burn barrel. I believe if more people did that it would cut down on a ton of waste.
  • PJ_SoulPJ_Soul Vancouver, BCPosts: 47,767
    edited October 2015
    my2hands said:

    I've Googled it several different ways and still can't see a picture of it? There are pictures of trash in water, but no photos of the actual patch, which apparently there are 2 of... Nothing from a plane, nothing from space, nothing from a boat cutting through it?

    :confused: There are a lot of search results.... many of a giant island of garbage floating in the ocean.
    Post edited by PJ_Soul on
    With all its sham, drudgery, and broken dreams, it is still a beautiful world. Be careful. Strive to be happy. ~ Desiderata
  • TL170678TL170678 Near Louisville, in Indiana, closer to KentuckyPosts: 422
    http://www.theoceancleanup.com/

    There are some folks trying to fix this. Hopefully they get the resources they need. Last year some 7 year old came up with an idea that got a lot of press. I think they want to put barriers out there to catch it.
  • brianluxbrianlux Moving through All Kinds of Terrain.Posts: 28,540
    TL170678 said:

    brianlux said:

    Smellyman said:

    It's why I have gone off plastic or greatly reduce anyway. Like anything it's tough to cut completely. For grocery shopping it's pretty easy. I buy nothing in plastic or use plastic bags on checkout.

    Fruit and veggies wrapped in plastic? c'mon. Milk, egg cartons, condiments etc. There is a lot of simple things you can do to cut out plastic.

    Problem is most people don't give a shit and I am weirdo to a lot of people who just give me condescending looks. Oh well, I will do my part for you self entitled consumer pricks and your stupid narcissistic kids and entire generation of narcissits you are helping raise.

    Go Smellyman! I can't believe people give you shit for doing the right thing.

    Eggs we have got down by using the same cartons to buy eggs either from friends who have hens or the Farmer's Market. We have a store that dispenses soap and shampoo into your own refillable but not all towns have this (yet, I hope). I never get a bag unless it's used (even then, rarely), and always take my own reusable ones. Milk is tough for me as I don't use the stuff but do use almond milk. I water it down to make it stretch but eventually I do have to toss the damn container. What should I do about that?

    My biggest sin that way is the car. Shit load of plastic. We ride share, group our errand running together, have no drive days as often as possible, maintain the vehicle so that it will last at the very least 300,000 miles (482,803 km) and have a short commute but still, major environmental sin! I would be lying if I said otherwise.
    My parents have a couple of acres where they live and rather paying $100.00 per month for garbage pick up they just take all plastics (aka milk jugs), paper, and cans to the recycling center every month (it`s free) and burn every thing else in a burn barrel. I believe if more people did that it would cut down on a ton of waste.
    What can't be recycled or put in compost that they burn?

    We recycle everything we can but keep finding ways to purchase using reusable containers which reduces the need even for recycling which used energy. What we don't recycle or compost each week is about one half to one square foot of trash and even that seems too much. If everybody did that we would still have between 3 and 7 billion square feet of trash in the world every week. And yet I see neighbors up and down the street who put out a full trash can of trash every week.
    "Hate your job, love your stuff
    If you think that's living, you are
    Wrong, wrong, wrong, wrong"
    -Juliana Hatfield
    ***********
    M.I.T.S.







  • brianluxbrianlux Moving through All Kinds of Terrain.Posts: 28,540
    rgambs said:

    my2hands said:

    I've Googled it several different ways and still can't see a picture of it? There are pictures of trash in water, but no photos of the actual patch, which apparently there are 2 of... Nothing from a plane, nothing from space, nothing from a boat cutting through it?

    It seems you are misunderstanding the nature and composition of the "Great Garbage Patch".
    Not your fault, the name is misleading and many sources about it are as well. It isn't an island, or a tangled floating mass of garbage like the descriptions paint it to be. The photos you saw are the reality. Ocean currents push all the trash into zones known as gyres, where the water circulates around and traps the plastic floating everywhere. If you see photos of jars of sample water with bits of plastic floating in it, that is what the density is in reality. Given the vastness of the oceans, it is a much higher density than it looks to the laymen, and ecologically it is a much bigger deal than it appears to be in comparison with the floating dump that most picture.
    Well said, Gambs. Also. much of the plastic is not readily visible as it has broken down into tiny particles which are toxic or hazardous to the sea life that ingest them.
    "Hate your job, love your stuff
    If you think that's living, you are
    Wrong, wrong, wrong, wrong"
    -Juliana Hatfield
    ***********
    M.I.T.S.







  • TL170678TL170678 Near Louisville, in Indiana, closer to KentuckyPosts: 422
    "What can't be recycled or put in compost that they burn? "

    Not sure man what exactly they do. I just know they kept on recycling to save money on garbage pick up after our area stopped sending recycling trucks around. City used to give us orange bins and sent a recycling truck, like a garbage truck, but I guess budget cuts along with a lot of people mad that they had the choice to recycle because they thought they were required to, ended that.

  • brianluxbrianlux Moving through All Kinds of Terrain.Posts: 28,540
    TL170678 said:

    "What can't be recycled or put in compost that they burn? "

    Not sure man what exactly they do. I just know they kept on recycling to save money on garbage pick up after our area stopped sending recycling trucks around. City used to give us orange bins and sent a recycling truck, like a garbage truck, but I guess budget cuts along with a lot of people mad that they had the choice to recycle because they thought they were required to, ended that.

    In any case, good for them for recycling, especially when their city cut out using the bins. I read somewhere that recycling doesn't bring in a good profit which is why it is difficult to convince all cities to do it. The trade off is money vs planet. Money too often wins but I still bet on Planet.
    "Hate your job, love your stuff
    If you think that's living, you are
    Wrong, wrong, wrong, wrong"
    -Juliana Hatfield
    ***********
    M.I.T.S.







  • jerparker20jerparker20 St. Paul, MNPosts: 1,624
    I fucking hate, hate, plastic shopping bags. I really wish they were outlawed. I was in the middle of nowhere Alaska a few years ago. Only accessible by plane. Start hiking. Within a 1/4 mile what do I spot in a tree... Plastic bag.

  • brianluxbrianlux Moving through All Kinds of Terrain.Posts: 28,540

    I fucking hate, hate, plastic shopping bags. I really wish they were outlawed. I was in the middle of nowhere Alaska a few years ago. Only accessible by plane. Start hiking. Within a 1/4 mile what do I spot in a tree... Plastic bag.

    Damn things blow around in the wind and end up everywhere. Same with helium balloons. There are probably helium balloons on the moon and Mars by now.
    "Hate your job, love your stuff
    If you think that's living, you are
    Wrong, wrong, wrong, wrong"
    -Juliana Hatfield
    ***********
    M.I.T.S.







  • PJ_SoulPJ_Soul Vancouver, BCPosts: 47,767
    edited October 2015

    I fucking hate, hate, plastic shopping bags. I really wish they were outlawed. I was in the middle of nowhere Alaska a few years ago. Only accessible by plane. Start hiking. Within a 1/4 mile what do I spot in a tree... Plastic bag.

    I hate hate hate the people who litter plastic bags. Not the bags themselves. Sometimes I NEED a plastic bag (not for groceries besides raw meat, but for other things). People just need to dispose of them/recycle them properly.
    (so no one thinks that a plastic bag caught in the wind is the most beautiful thing they've ever seen? ;) )
    With all its sham, drudgery, and broken dreams, it is still a beautiful world. Be careful. Strive to be happy. ~ Desiderata
  • brianluxbrianlux Moving through All Kinds of Terrain.Posts: 28,540
    PJ_Soul said:

    I fucking hate, hate, plastic shopping bags. I really wish they were outlawed. I was in the middle of nowhere Alaska a few years ago. Only accessible by plane. Start hiking. Within a 1/4 mile what do I spot in a tree... Plastic bag.

    I hate hate hate the people who litter plastic bags. Not the bags themselves. Sometimes I NEED a plastic bag (not for groceries besides raw meat, but for other things). People just need to dispose of them/recycle them properly.
    (so no one thinks that a plastic bag caught in the wind is the most beautiful thing they've ever seen? ;) )
    No but this is!

    image

    "Hate your job, love your stuff
    If you think that's living, you are
    Wrong, wrong, wrong, wrong"
    -Juliana Hatfield
    ***********
    M.I.T.S.







  • jerparker20jerparker20 St. Paul, MNPosts: 1,624
    PJ_Soul said:

    I fucking hate, hate, plastic shopping bags. I really wish they were outlawed. I was in the middle of nowhere Alaska a few years ago. Only accessible by plane. Start hiking. Within a 1/4 mile what do I spot in a tree... Plastic bag.

    I hate hate hate the people who litter plastic bags. Not the bags themselves. Sometimes I NEED a plastic bag (not for groceries besides raw meat, but for other things). People just need to dispose of them/recycle them properly.
    (so no one thinks that a plastic bag caught in the wind is the most beautiful thing they've ever seen? ;) )
    Agreed. I too am guilty of occasionally using a plastic. They're great for cleaning the cat litter box.

    But... Getting rid plastic bags would be much easier than getting rid of those who can't properly dispose of a plastic bag.
  • ldent42ldent42 NYCPosts: 7,843
    I've brought this up on here before and it didn't really get understood.
    Plastic bags from the grocery store are something that a lot of people find obnoxious.
    What I ask those people, is how do you take your trash out? You buy plastic garbage bags along with your groceries right?
    I feel that using plastic grocery bags for garbage bags is no worse than using reusable grocery bags and buying plastic trash bags. But that's just me.
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  • Anything you can do to offset what you put in a landfill is a good start.

  • AnnafalkAnnafalk SwedenPosts: 3,919
    Plastic and nature simply don't belong together. It also shouldn't be legal to produce different wash creams, tooth paste and such with these small plastics particles in them. So much we never even really needed from the beginning is floating around in our oceans.
  • brianluxbrianlux Moving through All Kinds of Terrain.Posts: 28,540
    Annafalk said:

    Plastic and nature simply don't belong together. It also shouldn't be legal to produce different wash creams, tooth paste and such with these small plastics particles in them. So much we never even really needed from the beginning is floating around in our oceans.

    Excellent point, Annafalk. I'm not sure everyone is aware of the plastics in these products.

    Excellent ray avatar/photo, by the way!
    "Hate your job, love your stuff
    If you think that's living, you are
    Wrong, wrong, wrong, wrong"
    -Juliana Hatfield
    ***********
    M.I.T.S.







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