This is a bit harsh because I don’t think it is necessarily a bad thing to think about ways to clean up the oceans, but the reality is that the human brain does not grasp the scale of the problem. We can’t imagine how big the ocean and the garbage patch is so we don’t understand how impractical most cleaning suggestions are.
So it does make MUCH more sense to think about how we can avoid putting any more trash into the oceans and even more how we can help other countries avoid it as well. Most western countries bury the majority of their trash, but that is not true around the world. Single use plastic is bad, but in modern life it is almost impossible to avoid it. Don’t buy bottled water, ask for things not to be put in plastic bags, at least think about plastic before you use it, and encourage your neighbor to do the same.
This is a devastating trailer, or at least I found it to be, but I think it should be watched so people begin to understand the ecological harm plastics are doing thousands of miles from civilization. I have been following Chris Jordon’s work for a couple of years. He is famous for taking graphic pictures of baby albatross carcasses filled with the plastics their parents found in the ocean around Midway and though was food. This film continues that theme, but in video, he is able to capture the suffering before the inevitable death. It is heart wrenching, but it is truth.
I thought I would pair these two articles together since they have a common theme even through they come from two different sided on the Atlantic. Ocean currents are so interesting because they can be so unexpected. Flotsam and jetsam are not evenly distributed across the oceans, but collect in certain areas: sometimes on land and sometimes on the sea. The journey that things lost in the ocean take are often intriguing. Sadly, as more and more trash ends up in the oceans the mystery becomes replaced by a sense of repulsion. However, I guess all the trash is probably aiding researchers in understanding the ocean currents better than previously.
I was surprised on one of my trips to Mexico how very beautiful some of the beaches are since that is not really what I think of when I think of Mexico. It is a shame that this stretch of beautiful beach is also one of the ocean trash collection zones. We must reduce plastic trash and improper disposal of all trash before all the beaches of the world are plagued by plastic and other trash.
If you have been reading my posts, this won’t be news to you, but it is good that more sources are discussing the problems of plastic in our oceans and its effects on fish. I like eating fish, but I don’t want to eat plastic fish. Please help spread the world yourself and think of ways to reduce your plastic consumption.
The answer is firmly yes, but the questions should be how many whales are being killed or made sick and how many different species? I fear that plastic pollution in the oceans is going to be found to be adversely effecting much of the marine ecosystem and entering into the human food chain much more than we think.
A summary from the recent plastic pollution meeting in Hawaii. Of note:
“Here’s why recycling doesn’t work: to make another bag, 70% virgin content is introduced in the new bag, along with 30% post consumer. The result of recycling one bag roughly introduces 3.3 new bags into the waste stream.”