Great Pacific Garbage Patch. Area is known as the North Pacific Gyre, a swirling vortex of under-ocean currents that come together and keep the ocean water from going anywhere but there.
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Area is known as the North Pacific Gyre, a swirling vortex of under-ocean currents that come together and keep the ocean water from going anywhere but there.
The enormous stew of trash - which consists of 80 percent plastics and weighs some 3.5 million tons, say oceanographers - floats where few people ever travel, in a no-man’s land between San Francisco and Hawaii.
80 percent of the oceans’ litter originated on land. While ships drop the occasional load of shoes or hockey gloves into the waters (sometimes on purpose and illegally), the vast majority of sea garbage begins its journey as onshore trash.
In addition to posing an environmental risk, the area is also a big concern because of health risks that it poses for humans living on land. Chemicals from the plastics can get into our water, our food, and into our systems.