2.5 Million Square-Kilometre Plastic Patch Floating in the South Pacific

turtle and plastic waste

The discovery was made by a team of researchers led by Captain Charles Moore.

A massive plastic patch larger than Greenland has been discovered in the South Pacific, and much of the waste is believed to have originated in New Zealand.

“This area is enormous, it’s heavily polluted with plastic fragments,” he said.

Plastic was so prolific, Moore said the crew had to up the ante on what actually constituted a plastic patch, with the centre containing millions of fragments per square-kilometre.

Oceanographer Dr Erik van Sebille used data from thousands of drifting buoys to show how New Zealand’s plastics added to the plastic patch.

A third of dead turtles found on New Zealand beaches had plastic in their stomachs.

What troubled van Sebille most was not the amount of plastic in the oceans now, but how much there will be in future. “On current trends, in the next five years we will be putting more plastic in the ocean than all of the twentieth century,” he said.

Extracted from https://www.stuff.co.nz/environment/94879644/new-research-maps-massive-plastic-patch-floating-in-the-south-pacific – 23 July 2017

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