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Where and how are the so-called garbage patches being formed? How is it impacting marine life?
Transcript of Where and how are the so-called garbage patches being formed? How is it impacting marine life?
Yewon Lee Where and how are the so-called garbage patches being formed? How is it impacting marine life? Table of Contents 1. The Formation
- About the Pacific Ocean Garbage Patches
- About the Atlantic
2. The Impact on Humanity & Marine Life
- The Influence on Humanity &...
- Marine Life The Great Pacific Garbage Patch, The Atlantic The biggest landfill on Earth with approximately 100 million tonnes of plastic occupying more than 4.5 million square kilometers in the Pacific Ocean.
The Great Pacific garbage patch actually consists of more than one patch: Eastern Pacific Garbage Patch A major garbage patch in the Pacific Ocean. It is usually the one most referred to when people and media talk about the Great Pacific Garbage Patch.
Located halfway amid Hawaii and California in a spot of high pressure; majority of the debris is in the form of miniature pieces.
Much of the marine debris is mounted up in the core of this constantly spiraling, moving, and changing part of the ocean. Western Pacific Garbage Patch This garbage buildup is shaped and created by a recirculation current-cycling in a clockwise rotation-below the Kuroshio Current beside Japan.
There is some uncertainty regarding the causes of this revolving current. However, it is quite likely that it is caused by wind and ocean eddies. North Pacific Subtropical Convergence Zone The Subtropical Convergence Zone is located in the North Pacific.
Garbage from the Subtropical Convergence Zone causes the buildup occurring in the Hawaiian Islands. Although it is not a major concentration of marine debris that is currently forming in the Atlantic Ocean (in comparison to that of the Pacific), the gyres of the Atlantic (North Equatorial, Gulf Stream, North Atlantic, and Canary Current) is collecting marine debris that is equally as harmful to the lives of aquatic organisms. The Formation The Impact on Humanity & Marine Life Works Cited "Where Does the Garbage That Washes up on the Beach Come From?Garbage in the Pacific." The Great Pacific Garbage Patch. N.p., n.d. Web. 17 May 2013 "De-mystifying the "Great Pacific Garbage Patch"" Marine Debris Program. N.p., n.d. Web. 17 May 2013. "Ocean Trash Plaguing Our Sea." Ocean Portal. N.p., n.d. Web. 18 May 2013. "NOAA Marine Debris Program - 101 Marine Debris Info: Impacts." NOAA Marine Debris Program - 101 Marine Debris Info: Impacts. NOAA, n.d. Web. 20 May 2013 "NOAA Marine Debris Program - 101 Marine Debris Info: Movement." NOAA Marine Debris Program - 101 Marine Debris Info: Movement. NOAA, n.d. Web. 20 May 2013. As buoyant marine debris enters the ocean, ocean currents and wind are the main factors controlling its movement. The direction of this movement, however, could always be altered by seasonal changes and El Niño, thus does not always flow in a particular pattern.
As these garbage pieces are collected by gyres, most of them settle in the relatively calm and unmoving core. In General... Oceanic Features Contributing to the Formation of the Great Pacific Garbage Patch in a... "Large Scale" "Medium Scale" "Small Scale" Debris is collected by the North Pacific Subtropical Gyre and is spiraled in a clockwise motion.
Sometimes, it is forced to the center (as previously mentioned), because this is where the water molecules of the gyre collides into. Oceanic eddies and frontal meanders found in transition and convergence zones (see image to the right) are able to disperse and/or accumulate debris. Area of the
Subtropical High Area of the "recirculation gyre" The Eastern Pacific garbage patch
The Western Pacific garbage patch
The Subtropical Convergence Zone CONVERGENCE ZONE **NOAA Marine Debris Program:
"Think of meanders as the deviation from a straight line. As energy (wind/currents) hit the front there are undulations and "curvature" which are described as frontal meanders (movements to the north and south along the front." Marine debris may be gathered by Langmuir Circulation. Hawaiian
Archipelago Humanity Marine Life Increased possibility of humans consuming seafood that have once unknowingly gulped down trash. This could be extremely dangerous if the swallowed matter is either broken glass or cigarette lighters (may contain hazardous chemicals), etc. Economic Losses: Tourist attractions along shorelines may see a sharp decline in customers when marine debris starts to wash ashore and pile up. Kamilo Beach, Island of Hawaii Garbage washed ashore by waves. & 90% is plastic... non-biodegradable this means that These tiny bits of plastic will not break down but continue to pile up and change the world that, not only we live in, but also the world in which numerous aquatic species inhabit for now and years to come. Entanglement resulting in... injuries
extra weight, causing drowning and slowing down the movement of animals (which is essential in hunting food for survival) YOUR may cause Damage to Habitats and Ecosystems Important habitats (ex. coral reefs) may topple over due to the heavy weight of marine debris pressed upon it, or may get tangled by deserted fishing nets.
"Alien species" may find its way into other habitats -in which they do not belong in- simply by unconsciously attaching itself to floating garbage. This can have a negative influence on the ecosystems around it. xample: Fishing gears carelessly abandoned at sea may continue to trap fish and other marine organisms. Feeding on Plastic of the several billion tonnes of annual garbage production sent to oceans, Commonly, floating litter is consumed by birds and animals due to them not being able to identify these harmful materials correctly. For instance, some areas in the ocean literally have a 1:6 ratio between plankton and marine litter. This is a huge problem because filter feeders-while trying to screen out plankton and fish eggs- can simply and accidentally swallow hazardous matter.
These incidents occur frequently, and could lead to indigestion, starvation, and dehydration, resulting in deaths. (Note that the extinction rate of endangered species will speed up as we litter!) 70% of the garbage that enters the ocean gradually sinks down, smothering and entangling marine life. "An alien species of mollusk found
on derelict fishing nets in the
Northwestern Hawaiian Islands" -NOAA we could count on HOWEVER, Reducing... Reusing, &... Recycling... *Thanks for watching :)* To sum up, I believe that this life-threatening development of oceanic garbage patches should stop now. With our continuous and growing garbage production, we will be facing immense, magnified environmental complications that will be hard to ignore.
Firstly, there would be a possibility of sharp growth in the number of endangered species. This is due to deaths by ingestion, entanglement, and habitat damage by litter. Secondly, water may be seriously polluted due to chemicals accompanied with some trash, and a decline in the availability of clean water will emerge. Last but not least, the flow in ecosystems will have changed a little-in a negative sense.
Thus, countless unfavorable changes will happen on Earth, raising new health issues for all organisms. Carcass of a bird. Earth is almost hopeless... Others Although much of the attention of media and humanity is concentrating on the Great Pacific Garbage Patch, litter we create is causing buildup in all oceans of Earth, including the Arctic and Antarctica. In one year, we produce 1000 kg of waste per person... :( Sadly, we are unable to turn everything back into what it was like years ago... to stop the worsening state of the so-called garbage patches.