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Scientists Found a Second Giant Garbage Patch in the Pacific!

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posted on Jul, 25 2017 @ 01:43 PM
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Remember these ATS stories?

2007 - Continent-size toxic stew of plastic trash fouling swath of Pacific Ocean.
Feb. 2011 – Plastic Vortex or Great Pacific Garbage Patch.
July 2011 – Great Pacific Garbage Patch - bigger by 25 million tons since March.
May 2012 – Plastic now outweighs plankton in the ocean.

 



Somewhere in the North Pacific, there's a giant floating patch of garbage thousands of miles wide. It contains millions of tons of plastic and is estimated to take up an area the size of Alaska. We've known about it for around 30 years, and scientists have struggled to develop a method to clean it up.

And now, a group of researchers has discovered another one.

The Great Pacific Garbage Patch floating in the North Pacific is the result of ocean currents called gyres. These gyres are circling currents that can trap particles floating in them and push them into a single area. Essentially, all the trash thrown into the North Pacific is brought to a single area off the coast of North America.

But the Pacific Ocean has another gyre in the Southern hemisphere, and it behaves the same way. Recently, scientists exploring a remote island in the South Pacific found almost 20 tons of plastic washed up on a beach, and they began to suspect that the South Pacific had a garbage patch of its own.

A recent expedition to the area appears to confirm that this new garbage patch does exist. The researchers found an area about a million square miles in size, bigger than the state of Texas, containing over a million tons of plastic.

Popular Mechanics, July 21, 2017 - Scientists Found a Second Giant Garbage Patch in the Pacific.

The reason the article says “appears to confirm” is because they have not published their scientific paper yet. They need to do another sample, verify the size, recount the microplastics for density, etc., before a true paper can be published.

But it makes sense: one in the northern hemisphere and one quickly building in the southern hemisphere. A scientific paper seems kind of unnecessary at this point.

The plastic is not a water bottle, or a laundry soap bottle, or even plastic bags. All that big stuff smashes together and grinds itself down to small pellets. These pellets float below the surface and extend down in depth. You cannot just throw a fishing net over the edge and trawl the stuff to the surface.

The only real efficient way to attack the plastic like a whale feeds. Circle around it producing bubbles and gathering it into a cone or a ball. Then come up from beneath, swallowing the whole thing while straining out the water like water through a whale’s baleen. So that is my solution: robotic microplastic eating whales. (Well, robots are a stretch but want to get a conversation started).

I thought maybe something electric but that idea does not seem viable out on the wide open ocean.

Someone asked the question, “Are you mad? How mad?” the other day... Yeah, I’m pretty f# mad right about now.

Anybody else have a realistic approach? Anybody else PO’d about humans being stupid enough to make two of these in our ocean?




posted on Jul, 25 2017 @ 01:48 PM
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a reply to: TEOTWAWKIAIFF

To think future generations will look back at ours with disgust we all let this happen and it is our grand kids who will really deal with it all.
Kinda ashamed of myself now

Bad humanity bad!.



posted on Jul, 25 2017 @ 01:52 PM
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No surprise and I wonder if they could synthesize or use actual Plastic eating microbes to spread over pile and make a difference?
Maybe scientists can synthesize the enzymes used by these microbes.

How bout Sea trash collectors, on a grand scale?

or from the Japanese

Additionally I hope more widespread campaigning bringing awareness to the public will help to reduce consumption and disposal of plastics.



posted on Jul, 25 2017 @ 01:56 PM
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The trash patches are huge, it is true.

Why are they just finding them now?

Shows us how freaking huge the Pacific Ocean is.



posted on Jul, 25 2017 @ 01:58 PM
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a reply to: testingtesting

You should not feel bad unless you are dumping the crap in the ocean.

There has to be many many countries who dump their sh in the ocean. They are the problem not you.
edit on 25-7-2017 by seasonal because: (no reason given)



posted on Jul, 25 2017 @ 02:02 PM
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a reply to: testingtesting

Reminds of the old 70's commercial with the "Crying Indian" they did for earth day.

a reply to: waftist


Most of the plastic the researchers found wasn't in the form of water bottles or shopping bags but rather tiny plastic pieces smaller than grains of rice – and that indicates this debris has been on a longer journey than the trash in the North Pacific.

As these bits of plastic are so tiny they're very difficult to clean up, and we really need to be stopping this stuff getting into our oceans in the first place.

ScienceAlert.com - There's Another Huge Plastic Garbage Patch in The Pacific Ocean.

I was thinking, since it washed up on a beach, why not make a fake beach? Like a long ramp that gets shallower until it rises out of the water about ten feet. The plastic can land on that and be scooped up with mining equipment.

The microbes idea sounds cool. Any suggestions welcomed at this point!

As you said, and sciencealert, keep the stuff out of the ocean in the first place. But that is difficult to do when something like a typhoon or tsunami wipes out whole communities.



posted on Jul, 25 2017 @ 02:02 PM
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I understand New York has barges that take trash out to the Atlantic shelf off the coast and dump there ? How could that possibly cause any problems?

Perhaps it's better we don't colonize other planets...... oh and if we tried, we would have to travel through another dump surrounding the earth... Ironic huh...



posted on Jul, 25 2017 @ 02:04 PM
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This sort of issue pisses me off to no end. Then people wonder why we're having massive oceanic die-offs. Gee, I #ing wonder what could be a contributing factor... Notice I said A CONTRIBUTING FACTOR, not THE FACTOR. There are other things involved, but 90% of it is pollution oriented.



posted on Jul, 25 2017 @ 02:05 PM
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Couldn't we use all our rubbish as fuel? I always wondered why we don't.



posted on Jul, 25 2017 @ 02:07 PM
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a reply to: butcherguy

ScienceAlert said they sailed around Easter Island and past Robinson Cursoe Island (is that even real?! idk) where people rarely go. The island they found the garbage on is protected so nobody goes there.

All the crap floating around in the Pacific... size will only work so long as a defense.

 


@seasonal


Some countries treat the ocean as a big trash bin then turn around and fish out of it. A wonder there are not more water born illnesses out there.



posted on Jul, 25 2017 @ 02:07 PM
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a reply to: Plotus

Humanity, until there's a cataclysmic event that completely changes it's perspective, shouldn't even contemplate "going to the stars." To what avail? Trash another planet out? Sorry, but that's just the way I see it.



posted on Jul, 25 2017 @ 02:09 PM
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a reply to: testingtesting

Supposedly, they've figured out ways to do it, yes, but as with everything else, since it's not a financial boon, they've put that on the skids too.



posted on Jul, 25 2017 @ 02:11 PM
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originally posted by: testingtesting
Couldn't we use all our rubbish as fuel? I always wondered why we don't.


Fuel? Indeed and a great idea!


Here is a mobile version...sweet!



posted on Jul, 25 2017 @ 02:11 PM
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a reply to: testingtesting

Or turn it back to plastics. It is already ground up.

There are some smaller sea creatures actually using the one in he North for shelter.

a reply to: SpeakerofTruth

Maybe that is why we seem to be "trapped" here. We are banned from space until we clean up our room.

CO2, atmospheric soot, plastic islands the size of US states, oil spills, nuclear waste,... yeah, I'd keep the dirty monkeys from trashing our neck of the woods too!



posted on Jul, 25 2017 @ 02:14 PM
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Problems with 'cleaning it up'.

Plastics also sink to the bottom where its much more difficult to 'filter'.

Plastics wash ashore covering island shorelines with it exclusively like a blanket, waiting for the next major storm to carry it back out to sea.

The sources of most of the junk are tourism and shipping or marine, trying to convince the cruise line industry to stop providing all the little containers of soap, shampoo, lotion and lip balm that get thrown overboard or dropped on the beach will go a long way, so will reducing the overfishing industry and epsecially the worlds navies from dumping at sea...

good luck.



posted on Jul, 25 2017 @ 02:16 PM
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Wonder how much the floating trash changes sea temperatures ?



posted on Jul, 25 2017 @ 02:19 PM
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originally posted by: seasonal
a reply to: testingtesting

You should not feel bad unless you are dumping the crap in the ocean.

There has to be many many countries who dump their sh in the ocean. They are the problem not you.


There would be no supply if there was no demand.

We would have to stop purchasing plastic to be guilt free in my opinion. I agree that the main culprits are the corporations who have been dumping into our oceans and waterways for centuries, but it's us who sets the demand.

I know I am a hypocrite as I type this from my plastic keyboard, but it's just like blaming the cartels for our coc aine addictions.



posted on Jul, 25 2017 @ 02:22 PM
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a reply to: TEOTWAWKIAIFF

Recently I was reading about Indonesia being a major plastic polluter, I'm no expert on ocean currents but I am willing to bet that their plastic is a major contributor, not to subtract from the other offenders.

This is just sad but no surprise from me.

I just wish I could do something about it, I'm literally just a drop in the ocean.



posted on Jul, 25 2017 @ 02:27 PM
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Was'nt for earth day....crying indian was in series of do not litter commercials. a reply to: TEOTWAWKIAIFF



posted on Jul, 25 2017 @ 02:28 PM
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This is just north of the Equator in the North Pacific near Hawaii but I'm confident there are some island like this near this newly discovered plastic patch.

I honestly had tears in my eyes when I saw this:



Humans suck!




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