Thursday, September 10, 2009

Great Pacific Garbage Patch

There is a huge area in the Pacific ocean where all the plastic on the planet's seas have been collecting. It’s been described as the world’s biggest rubbish dump, and is estimated to be 15 million square kilometers wide and 10 metres deep.

It is the product of underwater currents, and brings together all the junk that accumulates in the Pacific ocean. It is believed that there are 100 million tons of plastic circulating - or about 2.5% of all plastic items made since 1950.

This patch of plastic sludge was discovered by chance in 1997, and is still growing. Imagine what the fish (and birds, and us) are eating. Almost every piece of plastic that has ever been made is still around today - except for some that has been burnt, and that releases terrible toxins into the air.

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