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The Great Pacific Garbage Patch Essay

2197 words - 9 pages

The Great Pacific Garbage Patch By: Niamh Leah Frances Edmonstone
Imagine one day the whole ocean turning into a giant patch of toxic trash. People have been trashing the ocean for years, but now there is too much trash out there and it is destroying the environment and killing the marine life. If we don't try to stop this issue from escalating in the near future, The Great Pacific Garbage Patches size will increase rapidly and have huge effects on the planet we live on. Charles Moore, an oceanographer and a yacht racer, discovered the Great Pacific Garbage Patch in 1997 after he had competed in a yacht race ("National Geographic Education"). The Great Pacific Garbage Patch is located in ...view middle of the document...

The birds and turtles are in danger of choking or starving because they are not filling themselves with food but with plastic and other dangerous and highly toxic materials. It is said that one million seabirds and one hundred thousand marine animals die each year due to The Great Pacific Garbage Patch ("greatpacificgarbagepatch.info"). These animals are also in danger from somehow coationnsuming the small pellets, which are the remainders of the broken down pieces of trash . Some scientist's research shows that the plastic pellets contain concentrated toxins, which could cause genetic disorders, poisoning and concentration inside the body of the animal ("Briney").

All of the plastic absorbs hydrophobic pollutants like PCBs, polychlorinated biphenyls, a toxin in environmental pollution, and pesticides like DDT, dichlorodiphenyltrichloroethane, a highly toxic chemical to animals ("Kostigen"). After the animals have consumed the pollutants and pesticides, they travel through their systems until they get into the tissue of the organism. The pollutants and pesticides could also kill the organism or make their way through the food chain to us humans. After Charles Moore discovered the Great Pacific Garbage Patch, he founded an organization called Algalita Marine Research Foundation ("National Geographic Education. Since 1997, there have been many outcomes from the research of this foundation. For the last few years, they have been dragging manta trawl's (a net wit with metal wings that resemble a manta ray to make it stay on the surface of the water) through the patch to gather samples ("Algalita History"). The scientists have analyzed the samples to test that water for plastic content and to examine the fish and dead wildlife for plastic toxicity. In addition to the work being carried out by the Algalita Marine Research Foundation, the Greenpeace ship Esperanza has been patrolling the North Pacific Ocean since 2006, trying to clean up the trash piece by piece. Greenpeace, an organization that helps conserve the environment around the world, has also had many expeditions to find more research to raise more awareness with shocking and interesting facts. They also conduct many walks with people to help clean up the beaches and shorelines around the world ("Ocean Plastic Pollution") The best way to solve this vastly growing issue is for us, as individuals, to use our knowledge on this topic and think twice before we buy plastics. We can take action to help this growing problem by using a lot less plastic, recycling our trash and trying to reuse the plastic products we have. For example, in the supermarket, we could buy products with minimal or biodegradable plastic packaging. In our community we can work alongside our local councils, schools and businesses to work on helping and encouraging people to recycle. Another way to help is if you live close to a shoreline or a beach to take part in walks to pick up pieces of trash which have been littered...

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