Every 11 years, our production of plastic doubles, and over the coming 11 years we’ll produce more plastic than we’ve made since we started.
…In 2015, a paper published in the journal Science estimated that somewhere between 4.8 and 12.7 million metric tons of plastic enter the ocean each year. The researchers arrived at this figure after estimating how much plastic waste every coastal country in the world produces, and then calculated how much could wash into the sea from open dumps and improperly secured landfills. The scientists guess that this amounts to between 15 to 40 percent of all disposed plastic.
…Henderson Island, a deserted atoll in the middle of the southern Pacific Ocean. ….where the highest density of plastic waste anywhere on the planet [is.] …37.7 million pieces had washed up and spread out over the uninhabited island, and that as many as 13,300 new pieces arrive every day.
…five “garbage patches,” the accumulation zones of plastic that form at the ocean’s five subtropical gyres.
…the North Pacific Gyre jettisons about 50 percent of its contents every orbit, which takes about three years. That means the plastic leaves the gyre and will either end up on shore, or in another gyre.
Arguing that clean-up efforts aren’t worth pursuing because we need to stop the plastic at the source is cranky old bullshit. Of course stopping it at the source would be ideal but until that happens clean up is also a good idea and something we should be trying to do. Dismissing clean up ideas out of hand because in an ideal world we would stop the source of the problem is ridiculous and defeatist. The cranky old asshole spouting such unhelpful negativity crap need to sit down and shut the fuck up. Or maybe choke on a big swirling mass of mass of floating plastic. Either way, just fucking shut the hell up.