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  1. #1
    rip Angalifu
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    UNESCO welcomes Vortices of Trash

    I'd prefer to call the new state the Plastic Gyres.

    But I suppose Garbage Patch will do.

    Welcome to the global community!
    “Why is it that we rejoice at a birth and grieve at a funeral? It is because we are not the person involved.” ~ Mark Twain

  2. #2
    Canuck rhymes with f*ck
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    Re: UNESCO welcomes Vortices of Trash

    I didn't know there were 5. Unfortunately, humans won't wake up to what they're doing until they've already done it.

  3. #3

    Re: UNESCO welcomes Vortices of Trash

    I'm not sure I believe it... twice the size of Texas?

    Show it to me on Google Earth/Maps... THEN I'll believe it.
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  4. #4
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    Re: UNESCO welcomes Vortices of Trash

    Quote Originally Posted by borg69unimatrix View Post
    I'm not sure I believe it... twice the size of Texas?

    Show it to me on Google Earth/Maps... THEN I'll believe it.
    The size of the gyres is created by oceans' currents. If you can believe that there are ocean currents that swirl in a size twice that of Texas, it may make more sense.

    The densities of the garbage, chemical crap and photo-degraded plastic patches varies. I suppose in some areas there is a large amount of big debris floating at the surface where it might be visible from above. Most of the debris is just below the surface though.

    If you do a little googling, you should find plenty of evidence that there's tons of plastic choking the oceans.



    why can't you see the gyres on Google Earth?

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  6. #6
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    Re: UNESCO welcomes Vortices of Trash

    Here are some quotes from the io9 article:

    MYTH: There is a giant island of solid garbage floating in the Pacific.
    FACT: There are millions of small and microscopic pieces of plastic, about .4 pieces per cubic meter, floating over a roughly 5000 square km area of the Pacific. This amount has increased significantly over the past 40 years.
    Though she and her team have found some larger pieces of plastic, like buoys and tires, most are microscopic. What's alarming about them isn't their size, but the sheer amount of plastic.
    But if trends continue, we're going to see more plastic than fish. And with that plastic will come more invasive species, more water skaters, and more creatures to eat the water skaters' eggs. The danger is that this could alter the open ocean forever — and destroy all the native life there that has kept the oceans healthy for thousands of years.
    Angel White's view from the "no trick zone" blog is that the amount of plastic "isn't trivial" but exaggerated. Nevertheless, she seems to think that keeping trash out of the oceans is a good idea.

  7. #7

    Re: UNESCO welcomes Vortices of Trash

    I agree it's a problem... my gripe with these kind of stories is the embellishments, and falsified facts they post with them... like them using this picture in your original link:

    Implying the pic was taken in the "Texas sized island of plastic".
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  8. #8
    RazorzEdge88
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    Re: UNESCO welcomes Vortices of Trash

    I read something weird/ironic about it, which is that removing the debris would do such substantial damage to the surrounding ecosystem that they basically have to leave it.

    Quote Originally Posted by borg69unimatrix View Post
    I'm not sure I believe it... twice the size of Texas?

    Show it to me on Google Earth/Maps... THEN I'll believe it.
    Wow. I love ya borg, but I can't believe you just said that.

  9. #9

    Re: UNESCO welcomes Vortices of Trash

    Think of it like mowing the lawn... you'd have to have ships with some kind of filter drug on the back like a big net to capture the particles. The amount of fuel used and the amount of indigenous life they would also catch would defeat the purpose of any benefits.

    I'm not saying it's not bad or a problem. I just hate the sensationalism they're ingraining into kids and lessor educated who believe there's a plastic island Texas sized you can walk on. Not just this subject either... they do it all the time, often to promote their own agendas more then the cause they're squawking about.

    LOL. ok... I'm done ranting.
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  10. #10
    RazorzEdge88
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    Re: UNESCO welcomes Vortices of Trash

    I agree that there's sensationalism here, but this is actually very important from a public health/food sustainability standpoint, as marine life are consuming plastic particles, which is in turn causing carcinogens to turn up in seafood.

  11. #11
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    Re: UNESCO welcomes Vortices of Trash

    Can't say i have seen it all or studied the amount... but I have seen this with my own eyes.

    We as a Navy navigate around it, where possible, because the associated damage caused to seawater systems, the in-ability to make clean water when your in a gyre for a long period, the screw fouling nature of some items... it is just a mess.

    Another anecdotal story, I was in charge of a ship in the Philippines at one point in time. We drifted at night to save fuel, maintaining a specific distance from the areas we were working. Since we drifted we would often find ourselves drifting among the trash... it being carried by the same currents. It easily went as far as the eye could see and that was just in the Sulu sea.
    Everyone can be great, because everyone can serve.
    ~ Martin Luther King, Jr.


  12. #12

    Re: UNESCO welcomes Vortices of Trash

    The entire planet is consuming them.

    What cracks me up is you can't smoke at a drive up window, or within 20 feet of a store, but it is ok for those workers to inhale carbon monoxide from cars all day that put out way more harmful fumes than second hand smoke. Politicians don't look at the real, real big picture.

    I'm not condoning smoking, but given the choice I'd rather be locked in a garage with a smoker then with a running car.
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  13. #13
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    Re: UNESCO welcomes Vortices of Trash

    I actually appreciate getting the details clarified and fleshed-out. Making good decisions follows a good assessment of the facts.

    On the other hand, if the sensationalism inspires someone somewhere to think through the consequences of mismanaging their waste, there's some benefit. In today's orcish world, it sometimes takes an exaggerated image to capture people's attention.

    *

    Interesting stories, JayHawk. Litter and trash spoiling nature pisses me off. I'm forever gobsmacked when I'm out in the hills and forests around Portland and I come across plastic bags of dog shit, soda pop bottles, toilet paper, cigarette butts... WTF? If the people who seem to enjoy nature are so willing to litter...

  14. #14
    RazorzEdge88
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    Re: UNESCO welcomes Vortices of Trash

    Quote Originally Posted by zoltanspawn View Post
    I actually appreciate getting the details clarified and fleshed-out. Making good decisions follows a good assessment of the facts.

    On the other hand, if the sensationalism inspires someone somewhere to think through the consequences of mismanaging their waste, there's some benefit. In today's orcish world, it sometimes takes an exaggerated image to capture people's attention.
    I don't know - I think it's ultimately more harmful to pull some bait-and-switch. It makes it easier for the big polluters (read: industry) to make distortions and hide behind some illusion of dishonesty in their opposition.

    The real consequences are alarming enough, which is that cancer-causing particles are increasingly turning up in an important food source.

  15. #15

    Re: UNESCO welcomes Vortices of Trash

    Just out of curiosity, can they tell, or identify where it came from? Is it all American, Chinese, ... ???

    Is it intentional pollution, or is it the remains of the last two big tsunamis or luxury liner ship wrecks?
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  16. #16
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    Re: UNESCO welcomes Vortices of Trash

    ^The picture above that misrepresents the Gyres is from Manila Bay, a harbor open to the ocean.

    In many parts of the world, trash is just dumped in waterways or there's no reasonable system for managing waste.

    Water sweeps garbage along from wherever it may be, and takes it finally into the oceans.

    Rain and stormwater often overwhelms the systems that are supposed to keep trash out, and cigarette butts and plastic caps are swept into the rivers and then out to sea. That is, in the cities that have such systems in place.

    Apparently, the shipping industry is also a source of garbage in oceans. Yeah, just thrown overboard illegally.

    More sources.

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