|Life encumbered by progress|
Not many people know about The Great Pacific Garbage Patch.
It is in the ocean, and the eastern portion is twice the size of Texas.
The western portion is not quite as large.
The garbage patches present numerous hazards to marine life, fishing and tourism. But before we discuss those, it's important to look at the role of plastic. Plastic constitutes 90 percent of all trash floating in the world's oceans. The United Nations Environment Program estimated in 2006 that every square mile of ocean hosts 46,000 pieces of floating plastic. In some areas, the amount of plastic outweighs the amount of plankton by a ratio of six to one. Of the more than 200 billion pounds of plastic the world produces each year, about 10 percent ends up in the ocean. Seventy percent of that eventually sinks, damaging life on the ocean floor. The rest floats; much of it ends up in gyres and the massive garbage patches that form there, with some plastic eventually washing up on a distant shore.(How Stuff Works). More than twice the size of Texas ... and then some.
I wonder if the astronauts can see it from space?
Out of sight out of mind.
UPDATE: Some related video: