Scientists sound the alarm. The amount of garbage in the oceans will double Journal of Science
Scientists sound the alarm. The amount of garbage in the oceans will double
Plastic debris in the oceans has reached unprecedented levels. The enormity of the environmental devastation is staggering, and experts are warning that within the next decade, the amount of trash in the oceans will double.
Plastic Change is an international organisation that aims to raise awareness about the effects of plastic litter on the oceansóin the growing pollution in theód oceanów through plastic trash. It’s based in Denmark. Experts at the organization are warning that the amount of wasteóThe amount of plastic in the oceans will double over the next 10 years. If we don’t act, there will be more plastic trash in the oceans than fish. Plastic Change wants to reverseóto follow this trend. Their mission is to educate, collect data and produce documentsów.
It was researchers from Plastic Change who organized the expedition, whichóThe goal of the study was to determine the routes and largest concentrations of plastic trash in the Pacific Ocean. The group collected tiny particles of plastic along a route from Los Angeles to Hawaiiów. These particles are the remains of larger, plastic objectsów, whichóThe plastic trash has been torn to pieces by sun, waves and other factorsów. Wind and ocean currents collect plastic debris, resulting in the formation of huge islands.
Environmentalists used a special tool that looks like Manta. It collects plastic particles from the water surface. Researchers have examined the róand also the water on the róat different depths. According to biologist Kristian Syberg, plastic trash floating on the surface of the water is just the tip of the góicebergs. The results of their work are not optimistic.
– There are several hypotheses as to what happened to some of the plastic trash thatóand it’s not floating on water. Parts of it were definitely submerged, some of it was led up the food chain – Syberg said.
Scientists are sounding the alarm. Unless measures are taken to improve the situation, we will literally drown in waste. The effects could be incalculable. – The amount of plastic trash in the oceans will double in the next 10 years – according to Henrik Beha Pedersen, founder of Plastic Change.
Plastic debris threatens marine ecosystems. Dolphins become entangled in old fishing nets. Chunks of plastic linger in the digestive tracts of someóof these animals. ŻóSea lions mistake plastic bags for jellyfish, whichóre are their delicacy. There have been cases of cetaceans dying from ingesting plastic bags. It is estimated that more than one million birds die because of itóand 100,000 mammalsóin a year.
Remains of an albatross with its stomach contents, photo. Duncan Wright/Wikimedia Commons
Currently, there are an estimated 5.25 trillionóin a pieceóin plastic. Some of this mass floats on ocean surfacesóin creating large clusters of debris. The Great Pacific Garbage Patch, discovered in 1997, weighs about 3.5 million tons. Similar marine „landfills” have formed in all the oceans. The bigger ones are five, the smaller ones no one counts.