Solving the problem of plastic pollution demands innovation," said Rachel Lincoln Sarnoff, 5 Gyres
To get a more accurate scope, Slat contacted professors at the Universities of Delft, Utrecht, and Hawaii to come up with scientific estimates of how much extractable plastic there were at the top levels of the gyres
Due to large rotating ocean currents, trash is concentrated by so-called gyres
to form floating dumps.
The study was conducted by Marcus Eriksen of the Five Gyres
Institute in Los Angeles who derived the data derived from 24 separate ocean expeditions between 2007 and 2013, to sample plastic pollution.
Experts used towed nets to gather samples from five sub-tropical gyres
- huge areas of circulating ocean currents - as well as coastal Australia, the Bay of Bengal and the Mediterranean.
Plastic accumulates in ocean gyres
and in some places scientists have measured six times more plastic than plankton;
In this article we first discuss general principals of the plankton ecosystem, biogeochemical functions in sub-tropical gyres
worldwide and the prognostics for these systems in a changing ocean.
The Santa Monica, California-based non-profit 5 Gyres
Institute is studying the impact of micro-beads and other microplastics on aquatic environments and found that a single tube of facial cleanser can contain over three hundred million micro-beads.
Once it's in the water, plastic does not degrade but instead breaks into smaller pieces and swirls in massive ocean gyres
, creating soupy surfaces peppered with the material.
Vast garbage patches enmeshed in giant ocean gyres
were first discovered more than a decade ago.
At least five gyres
, or floating garbage patches, are spread across the globe, containing more than 20 million items of rubbish.
I found more in the Great Lakes than in any sample anywhere in the world's oceans," says Eriksen, cofounder with Cummins of the 5 Gyres
Institute, a nonprofit dedicated to documenting plastic pollution in the world's five major oceanic gyres
(huge swirling currents in which debris accumulates in the North and South Pacific, the North and South Atlantic, and the Indian Ocean--the North Pacific gyre
has amassed a "garbage patch" as big as the state of Texas).