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Plastic Islands

Sustainable Agriculture
by

Camille Hayden

on 24 April 2012

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Transcript of Plastic Islands

Plastic Islands Camille Hayden What are the Plastic Islands? Plastic islands are the accumulation of bits of plastic that are brought together by gyres, or the ocean current.
As the population of the earth increases daily, the amount of trash that we create grows as well.
The largest “island” is more of a plastic soup that almost stretches from California to Japan. Many of the pieces of plastic are really small, about a cm across. Scientists are mainly worried about the effect plastic is having on the ecosystem. Who discovered the Islands? Charles Moore is an American oceanographer who researched and discovered the plastic islands. In 1997 he stumbled across the area now known as the “Great Pacific Garbage patch” while returning to California from Hawaii.
Where are these "Islands" located? The largest island of trash is located in between the California coast and Japan.
Other islands have been discovered where the oceans gyres are.
Resources- http://www.independent.co.uk/environment/green-living/the-worlds-rubbish-dump-a-tip-that-stretches-from-hawaii-to-japan-778016.html
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/science-environment-11478261
http://geography.about.com/od/globalproblemsandissues/a/trashislands.htm
http://www.algalita.org/about-us/index.html#History
http://www.google.com/imgres?imgurl=http://reusablebags.typepad.com/photos/uncategorized/2008/08/06/greenpeace_trash_vortex.jpg&imgrefurl=http://reusablebags.typepad.com/newsroom/2008/08/plastic-island.html&h=529&w=757&sz=555&tbnid=DcspTSc5cc5zcM:&tbnh=85&tbnw=122&zoom=1&docid=mh7kstnoqpoM3M&hl=en&sa=X&ei=0KqDT_3wBcXe0QH_ocjyBw&ved=0CEAQ9QEwAw&dur=522
Damage Ocean Aquatic Species Although most often unnoticeable with the naked eye, when the plastic breaks down, whatever was stored in it whether it be DDt, PCB’s, other oils and pollutants is all released into the water.
In a 2004 E.P.A. report, the U.S. releases more than 850 billion gallons of untreated sewage and storm runoff every year in to the oceans.
In 1987 the Federal Government ratified the law Marpol Annex V, an international treaty that made it illegal to throw non biodegradable trash overboard from ships. It is estimated that he worlds Navies discard over 639,000 plastic containers annually into the oceans.
Greenpeace estimates that a million sea birds die a year from ingesting plastics. Sea turtles mistake floating plastic bags as Jelly fish and ultimately get smothered by the bag. With help from the Greenpeace ad campaign, the Layson Albatross has become the poster bird for plastic pollution. It is unsure as to what aspect of the plastic is killing the Layson. How to Reduce Pollution Facts: Even if people stopped using plastics now, the islands would still be there in a thousand years. In 2001 the average American used over 200 pounds of plastic. As daunting as it sounds there are ways to help reduce the amount of plastic getting discarded, it's as easy as a thought: Use canvas bags to shop
Take your own mug to a coffee house
Recycle as much as you can
Use glass when possible
Limit things you buy at grocer that are encased in plastic
Educate
Around 80 percent of marine plastic is discarded from land, blown in from landfills and city streets. Landfills can build a net fence around the perimeter to contain blowing debris. A lot of marine plastic comes from beachgoers. Cities can put recycle bins out on the beach in convenient locations, and in an aesthetically pleasing manner. Worlds Navies can help by reducing the amount of items that are plastic, and be held on ship until land is reached. How large entities can reduce plastic pollution: Non-profit groups raise awareness- Non-profit group called the Gulf of Alaska Keeper (GoAK). In first summer they cleaned 350 miles of shoreline, picking up enough trash to fill 46 trash hauling bins. In Northwestern Hawaiian islands, federal agencies have removed more than 500 metric tons of derelict fishing gear. It is estimated that 52 tons of fresh debris inundates Northwestern Hawaiian islands annually
Greenpeace also organizes groups to clean beaches and obtain information for research into endangered species Jeffrey Crerar Nicole Chapman
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