Thursday, June 17, 2010
The Albatross and the Pacific Island Trash Vortex
Sorry to be such a Debbie Downer you guys, but there are just some things that have been really ruffling my feathers lately (pun intended). Luckily, I am not a bird living in the Gulf or near the Pacific Island Trash Vortex because the ruffling of feathers has become the very least of their problems. Have you heard of this massive amount of garbage floating around in the ocean?
"It might sound like something out of an apocalyptic science fiction film, but I assure you—the Pacific Island Trash Vortex is very real indeed. It's essentially a huge carpet of garbage big enough to fill two Texases that's floating around due north of Hawaii. Still skeptical? Here's videographic proof of the Trash Vortex on the G Word. And here's a Greenpeace animation detailing the trash's path.
Okay, so there's a massive continent made of refuse floating around in the ocean. So what do we do about it? Let's not contribute to it, for starters."
So if this does not strike you has a HUGELY AWFUL SITUATION. Let me also share with you the story of the Albatross. The Albatross is an endangered species and in the Northern Pacific and albatross chicks are fed plastic garbage by their parents. The adult birds are confusing the plastic trash in the water for food and feeding it to the chicks. In September of 2009, photographer Chris Jordan went to document what was happening to these birds.
"On this diet of human trash, every year tens of thousands of albatross chicks die on Midway from starvation, toxicity, and choking.
To document this phenomenon as faithfully as possible, not a single piece of plastic in any of these photographs was moved, placed, manipulated, arranged, or altered in any way. These images depict the actual stomach contents of baby birds in one of the world's most remote marine sanctuaries, more than 2000 miles from the nearest continent."
Just think of that every time time you put your groceries a plastic bag or take a swig from your bottled water. And be careful with that cap... it's a choking hazard.