Monday, August 25, 2014

Garbage Island

Great Pacific Garbage Patch

Today Far Future Horizons we present a documentary concerning the negative impact humanity is having on the world’s oceans. Nothing symbolizes the degradation of the Aquatica’s health and vitality than the growing malignant tumour know as - Garbage Island.

Located between the continents of North America and Asia, lies an island the size of Texas. This island is made up completely of human garbage: a sludge of plastic, metal, and decapitated Barbie dolls – and the island is growing. First predicted in the late 1980′s, “Garbage Island” has become a reality. An area of the Pacific Ocean has become so choked with floating garbage that ice breaker ships are often needed to travel through the area. As the human population continues to grow and expend more and more of the Earth’s resources, so too grows Garbage Island. VICE has created a fantastic documentary about the dirtiest island in history – and perhaps humanity’s legacy?

Garbage Island or as it better known, the Great Pacific Garbage Patch is located within the North Pacific Gyre, one of the five major oceanic gyres.

The Great Pacific Garbage Patch, also described as the Pacific Trash Vortex, is a gyre of marine litter in the central North Pacific Ocean located roughly between 135°W to 155°W and 35°N to 42°N. The patch extends over an indeterminate area, with estimates ranging very widely depending on the degree of plastic concentration used to define the affected area.

The Patch is characterized by exceptionally high concentrations of pelagic plastics, chemical sludge, and other debris that have been trapped by the currents of the North Pacific Gyre. Despite its size and density, the patch is not visible from satellite photography, since it consists primarily of suspended particulates in the upper water column. Since plastics break down to even smaller polymers, concentrations of submerged particles are not visible from space, nor do they appear as a continuous debris field. Instead, the patch is defined as an area in which the mass of plastic debris in the upper water column is significantly higher than average.

Garbage Island

TOXIC - Garbage Island from on Vimeo.
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