Plastic is one of the biggest threats the oceans face today. The Ocean Cleanup organization has a plan to start cleaning it up. It has designed and tested a floating net system that will be assembled at Alameda Point and towed out to the Pacific Ocean garbage patch this summer.
“The Great Pacific Garbage Patch is the largest of the five offshore plastic accumulation zones in the world’s oceans,” states The Ocean Cleanup. “It is located halfway between Hawaii and California.”
For the past two years, Ocean Cleanup has been systematically retrieving trash and analyzing the contents. “The vast majority of plastics retrieved were made of rigid or hard polyethylene (PE) or polypropylene (PP), or derelict fishing gear (nets and ropes particularly),” states the group. The trash ranged in size from small fragments to larger objects and meter-sized fishing nets. Forty-six percent of the total mass is made up of fishing nets.
The following videos from Ocean Cleanup tell the story in more detail.
The scale of plastic ocean trash:
The assembly area at Alameda Point:
How the system will work:
More information can be found on The Ocean Cleanup website.