You know that point in the terror film: the one where the main character, walking backwards, fails to see behind them the menacing, frightful, gruesomely scary entity slowly materializing. Quick! Look now! It's there in the Pacific Ocean. And it's growing. Some reviews:
- What will my eyes have to say? Will people shirk from the stare? I truly hope not. --Ian Connacher
- ...wild images kept popping into my head. --Jody Rolla Lemon
- When we set off on this journey I was thrilled at the prospect of a new adventure. This peacefulness, however, gave way to shock... --Laurie Harvey
- ...the plastic plague is getting worse. --1st mate, Austin Brown
- "Is there really six times more plastic than zooplankton in the North Pacific Gyre?" students ask in disbelief. My answer will forever change from "That's what the research says," to "I've seen it myself." --Dr. Marcus Eriksen
The North Pacific Ocean currents rotate constantly, like a slow version of the tornadoes in another popular scary entertainment (and horrifying reality for anyone who has ever been in the path of a real tornado). This phenomenon is known as the "North Pacific Gyre". Like a tornado, this swirling column picks up debris, pulling it in and carrying it with on its travels. The result: a concentrated mass of waste and debris coursing across the North Pacific, making news when strewing waste on island beaches but otherwise known only to the fearless scientists who track the horror, trying to understand its record of devastation and disaster for any marine life in its path.
Good sources for scientific research on the Gyre include Ghostnet (great name for the project officially subtitled High Seas Debris Detection and Tracking in the North Pacific). Although the little yellow dots tracing meandering paths in the satellite images hardly succeed to capture the disgusting reality, the Ghostnet project will help to learn the risks, formulate reactions and publicize this relatively unknown phenomenon. For more graphic images, and video, check out the Algalita Marine Research Foundation. The Algalita site includes personal experiences of the crew which accompanied the research voyages into the Gyre, as well as free previews of the work of underwater videographer Jody Lemmon.
Or if you're not into the science, just let your imagination roam:
(to music...) du, dut. du, dut. du, dut. du, dut dududah! "Watch out, little monk seal!"
source: ::Honolulu Advertiser