Sunday, April 18, 2010

Garbage Patch Twins?

Sail the Gulf Stream from Bermuda to the Azores and what do you think you'll find? Miles and iles of plastic pieces suspended near the water's surface stuck in wads of seaweed and ocean debris. You've stumbled onto The Great Pacific Garbage Patch's eastern twin: The North Atlantic Subtropical Convergence Zone. Otherwise known as the Great ATLANTIC Garbage Patch.

Though the dimensions have not yet been determined, the area is known to be vast, centered in the Sargasso Sea, which is bounded by ocean currents. The highest concentrations of plastics are found between 22 and 38 degrees north latitude. Due to the stormier nature of the Eastern Seaboard and Atlantic, the garbage there is thought to be more diverse. Charles Moore, the ocean researcher credited with discovering the Pacific Patch, agrees that with the higher population on the East Coast and more rivers flowing south, comparable amounts of plastic can be expected. "Humanity's plastic footprint is probably more dangerous than our carbon footprint," he said.

1 comment:

Anna, The Lemon Lady said...

Amazing new discovery, yet really not all that surprising. Maybe our small actions to save Mother Earth will make a difference in the long run.

I keep on typing! Keep on talking! Keep on saving my plastic caps and lids for a recycling facility, rather than curbside recycling who may otherwise send small plastic pieces to landfill.
Good that you write about this topic too. More people = more awareness. Happy thoughts.