Antarctica Might Have Its Own Garbage Patch


Image: Wikipedia, CC.
March of the Garbage
By now most of you probably know about the giant garbage patches in the Pacific and Atlantic oceans. Unfortunately, it doesn't look like this water pollution problem is stopping there. The more we look, the more we find....
Here are the main ocean gyres. Image: Wikipedia, public domain.

In a series of surveys conducted during the austral summer of 2007-2008, researchers at the British Antarctic Survey and Greenpeace trawled the region, skimming surface waters and digging into the seabed. Even in the exceedingly remote Davis and Durmont D'Urville seas they found errant fishing buoys and a plastic cup. Plastic packaging was found floating in the Amundsen Sea. (source)

The quantity of garbage found wasn't nearly as big as in the Great Pacific Garbage Patch, but it still is a worrying sign that out trash is making its way to all corners of the Earth. When we throw stuff "away", that "away" often ends up being the oceans, and since it takes so long for most of this crap to break down (and even when it does, it sometime stays dangerous), it's likely that this problem will get worse before it gets better.

Consuming less useless crap, dematerialization (services and digital products instead of physical stuff), and cradle-to-cradle design combined with aggressive recycling can all help with this problem. But on a personal level, you need to do your part and be mindful of what you buy and throw away. We must all do our part.

Via Discovery News
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Tags: Oceans