About a year ago I heard about this landfill in the ocean, called The Eastern Garbage Patch. It’s inside the Northern Pacific gyre, which is basically a giant whirlpool. This gyre is only 1 of 5 in all the oceans, and each has its own version of the Garbage Patch.
While researching this I found an article about it and this man, Captain Charles Moore who’s dedicated his life to researching its affects on the environment and our health. He’s established the Algalita Marine Research Foundation to do so. The article said that the Patch is now twice the size of Texas! Moore is doing extensive research on the affects it’s having on our health. It primarily consists of plastic: shopping bags, cigarette lighters, toys, etc. The problem is that plastic never really goes away; it only breaks down into tiny pieces. So fish and birds eat it, thinking that it’s food, then larger fish such as Tuna eat the smaller fish and then we eat the tuna.
Plastic surrounds us, and scientists are discovering that all these chemicals, like BPA, are leaching into our food and drink. This happens by microwaving plastic containers, leaving your water bottle in a hot car, even eating canned food that was hot when packaged. One scientist Dr. Vom Saal has said, “These findings suggest that developmental exposure to BPA is contributing to the obesity epidemic.”
Annually we produce about 60 billion tons of plastic, and a lot is used for disposable products to make our lives more convenient. Oceanographer Curtis Ebbesmeyer said, “If you could fast-forward 10,000 years and do an archaeological dig, you’d find a little line of plastic. What happened to those people? Well, they ate their own plastic and disrupted their genetic structure and weren’t able to reproduce.” It’s a frightening statement.
To help, you can limit our use of plastics and whenever possible recycle them. Records indicate that only 3-5% of plastics are recycled in any way. We can also look into the use of alternative products and just become more aware of our actions and the affects they may be having on our future generations.
To read the full article visit: Our oceans are turning into plastic…are we?