The plastic things that we use everyday are of course convenient and extraordinarily cheap to produce. But what happens after we use them? According to researchers, mankind produces so much plastic garbage that it would be possible to cover the entire coastal area of the world with sacks of the stuff. Unfortunately, a major portion of this refuse ends up in the ocean. This floating garbage is unevenly distributed, currents and winds caused it to accumulate in particular parts of the oceans. Gradually, the plastic that has arrived on our shores is surrounding entire continents. the latest garbage accumulation found in the late 90s is in the northern part of the Pacific Ocean, and is called the Great Pacific Garbage Patch. According to various estimates, the mass of this waste is up to 100 million tons and the patch area is anywhere from 200 and seventy thousand to five hundred and seventy nine thousand square miles, that’s about one and a half million square kilometers It’s difficult to determine more accurate dimensions as all of this is in and under the water.
But for comparison the size of Madagascar is about 193 thousand square miles. That’s a half million square kilometers, and Greenland is seven hundred and seventy two thousand square miles, that’s about two million square kilometers. In other words this patch is somewhere between the size of Madagascar and Greenland. Not bad for a pile of rubbish right? But we’re just getting started This amazing record could be beaten by a patch off the coast of Chile, discovered in 2016. A fifth of this waste of which this newly formed island consists is tossed overboard from passing ships. The rest is runoff from sewers and waterways along the shores. Calculations of environmentalists vary. But there is one estimate that as much as 8 million tons of plastic enters the Earth’s oceans every year, this is about three percent of the total of all of the world’s wastes. Asian countries are considered to be the main polluters primarily China. Where industry is booming to the detriment of the environment and to which not much attention is paid. New continents might be considered a good thing, especially for big thinkers who believe our planet is suffering from overpopulation. but plastic in the ocean is really a huge problem And it’s not a matter of aesthetics, Pieces of garbage carried by waves under the influence of sunlight become fragile and when colliding with rocks, Ship hulls, or pieces of other debris easily break into smaller and smaller fragments.
Birds and sea creatures swallow these tiny pieces of plastic thinking it’s food, in the best case, the foreign object will pass through the animals gut, but in other cases it can kill the animal or remain in the body. We don’t know what happens to a living creature in whose stomach the plastic hangs were out for years. It might release a small amount of poisonous substances and poison the poor animals body. Poisons can also reach other living beings including humans along the food chain. especially if for example a pack of commercial fish feeds in a littered area Moreover the plastic itself can absorb poisonous substances such as mercury. This is not just a matter of toxic danger however, sea animals can become enmeshed in scraps of fishing nets and other wastes and also become entangled in polyethylene products such as plastic bags and tapes at the same time due to the debris, the water surface reflectivity and light permeability changes, affecting inhabitants of the lower layers over time the problem will only increase.