The Great Pacific Garbage Patch

It is time for a new blog post. But instead of writing a short article or expressing my thoughts on a particular subject, I would kindly ask my followers this time to take few minutes and research online ‘The Great Pacific Garbage Patch’ or ‘The North Pacific Gyre’.

Gyres are an important, and normal, part of oceanic and maritime currents on our planet. They are responsible for determining and regulating climates in different parts of the world and help transport heat and moisture from one region to another. For example, they can explain in part why two regions of the world at the same latitude exhibit different climate patterns (the Gulf Stream is a famous illustration). Only, today, the North Pacific Gyre has become a monstrous garbage landfill in the middle of the northern part of the Pacific Ocean – some would even call it the largest landfill in the world. It is indeed the largest landfill of plastic, and much of the plastic, which breaks down but does not degrade for very long, thrown into the Northern Pacific, makes its way into this gigantic rotating landfill.

Here is an article from HowStuffWorks describing the magnitude of the issue, and there is plenty of other material online that can be as informative, or more.

http://science.howstuffworks.com/environmental/earth/oceanography/great-pacific-garbage-patch.htm

This is yet another example of the unforeseen consequences of our actions, which can ultimately reach an alarming magnitude and result in long-term challenges to all of us sharing this same habitat that is our Earth. As with all such global issues, and this does not only apply to the environment, what is more important than pointing fingers or looking for someone to pay the price is the simple awareness and realisation of such facts, and to keep some of the possible remote consequences of our actions fresh in our minds.

All reasonable humans would (I hope) feel the need to do something about such global issues, but only if they were aware of them in the first place. Hence, it all starts with awareness…

JHTF

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