Great Pacific Garbage Patch

Australia’s Newcastle Herald describes the sorry tale of Ivan Macfadyen’s adventures in the polluted Pacific Ocean. Here’s a particularly depressing excerpt: “After we left Japan, it felt as if the ocean itself was…

The Great Pacific Garbage Patch is not alone. We now have our very own on the East coast. Via AP:


Researchers are warning of a new blight on the ocean: a swirl of confetti-like plastic debris stretching over thousands of square miles (kilometers) in a remote expanse of the Atlantic Ocean.

The floating garbage — hard to spot from the surface and spun together by a vortex of currents — was documented by two groups of scientists who trawled the sea between scenic Bermuda and Portugal’s mid-Atlantic Azores islands.

“We found the great Atlantic garbage patch,” said Anna Cummins, who collected plastic samples on a sailing voyage in February.

The debris is harmful for fish, sea mammals — and at the top of the food chain, potentially humans — even though much of the plastic has broken into such tiny pieces they are nearly invisible.

Plastic FishWhy don’t we just start eating fish made out of plastic? Simplify the food chain. Eric S. Page writes on NBC San Diego:

Scientists exploring the Great Pacific Garbage Patch have made another disturbing discovery, according to a published report.

The UCSD scientists returned from their trip to the Northern Pacific in August, bringing back tales, pictures and more than 100 samples from a blob of degraded plastic that is reportedly the size of Texas or bigger.

Now, in addition to the large concentration of plastic, Scripps Institution of Oceanography researchers have determined some of the fish in the area are eating it. “We did indeed find some indisputable pieces of plastic in their guts,” Pete Davison, a Scripps graduate student dissecting the fish, told the

Marine scientists from California are venturing this week to the middle of the North Pacific for a study of plastic debris accumulating across hundreds of miles (km) of open sea dubbed the…