You, Yes You! Are your aware of the resounding proportions to which plastic has taken over our oceans? Although, plastic is a superhero product that can be used in manufacturing literally everything today. It is a convenient material that makes life easy, a lot easy for
If you haven’t been living under the rock then you might have heard about “The Great Pacific Garbage Patch”. As the name suggests, it a collection of debris (consisting of plastic products) that are presently floating in the ocean between the Western coast of the US and Hawaii. It is the same plastic that is not recycled and ends up in the wastelands from where it finds its way into the oceans. This patch continues to devastate our marine life.
Here, we have pointed out the top 5 crucial facts on the Great Pacific Garbage Patch (GPGP):
Enormous in size
Nine feet deep in the ocean, GPGP is approximately seven million tons in size as claimed by the Scientists. This is roughly two times the size of the State of Texas. Although this doesn’t mean that the moment you see into the ocean you’ll be looking onto the plastic-covered ocean. You will see water but there is a lot of garbage both deep and wide. The humongous size of plastic debris has caused tremendous issues to both marine lives as well as the environment. And, it still continues to grow.
Ocean-The Biggest Landfill
Organizations who are working tirelessly to clear out this GPGP are certainly finding it harder & harder by the minute. Who would have thought that one day, our ocean would become one of the greatest landfills in the world? There is roughly 6 times more plastic than plankton which is mistaken for food by most fishes & marine life. A scary problem that demands imminent solution before our sea creatures become extinct.
Marine life in danger
From strangling the sea turtles to tricking them as a food item, plastic has indeed posed a greater threat to our marine life. The sea animals are consuming large amounts of plastic present in GPGP. Their digestive system mistakes it for food which results in lack of proper nourishment, sickness and ultimately death. The devastating effect of plastic products on marine life continues to grow with every passing hour. If this trend of throwing out plastic continues then the day is not far when most marine mammals would either be endangered or extinct.
The release of toxic chemicals
Plastic absorbs & leach many harmful pollutants and toxic chemicals. These chemicals have devastating effects on the mammals’ digestive system. What’s more? We too are consuming the same toxic & possibly more while enjoying our favorite fish being served on the platter. GPGP has one of the largest debris of plastic products so naturally, the effect is bound to be even more expansive. Plastic has now entered our food chain and if something is not done immediately then our future generations will pay for it.
More plastic is coming
The sheer size of this vortex of plastic debris is the root cause of many problems that our environment is facing today. And this doesn’t end here. More plastic is coming our way as we keep on throwing out cans, bottles and everything plastic. There isn’t an immediate solution to reverse the problem, and this is the scariest part. Thus, a lot depends on how we react from now onwards and make a conscious effort to use less plastic. The future generations are depending upon us. Utilizing traditional alternatives like stainless steel straws or something similar and limiting the use of plastic, is a necessary step forward.
What we need now is a large-scale cleanup process?
Cleanup of GPGP is an issue of gigantic proportions. No single country could ever take up this massive cleanup job of the ocean. The insurmountable task actually demands a lot of manpower, oil and practically a ton of equipment to clean up the mess we have created. Even if the larger floating items are removed and the massive cleanup process does take place still dealing with the photo-degradation process would take a tremendous amount of effort. So, yes large-scale cleanup is the right solution and it is now set to launch on September 8 by the Ocean Cleanup. Watch the video:
This video explains about The Ocean Cleanup technology and how it is meant to clear up the Great Pacific Garbage Patch. To read more about the project go to their official website.
The mission is to remove more than 1.8 trillion tons of plastic garbage from the ocean. A step in the right direction, we must say.