General chatter - Great Pacific Garbage Patch

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01-21-2009, 10:56 AM
Just stemming off from the garbage bag thread. Did you know there are large patches in the middle of the Pacific Ocean full of plastic? The largest section of garbage is called the Great Pacific Garbage Patch. Guess where a majority of the plastic comes from? Plastic bottles and bags. You can literally take a boat out into the middle of the Pacific, float right into the middle of this patch, dip a cup in the water, and see garbage in the water. It’s not just a patch that is only a few feet… it’s miles and miles of trash, mainly plastic. Imagine how deep the water is and it is full of crap that the currents are rounding up in this one large section of the ocean. If you currently drink out of plastic bottles or using plastic bags, you are hurting our environment. I know some of you are saying, but I recycle. The tops of every plastic bottle are not recyclable and end up in dumps where animals eat them or in our water systems where they slowly break into smaller and smaller pieces. Most recycling plants do not actually recycle plastic bags (although many are making the effort to change this), so while you think you are recycling your bags, they are actually ending up in dumps anyways…

We did a unit on this in the school I work in and it really disturbed me to think of how large the patch already is. How big will it be in another 100 years?

01-21-2009, 11:34 AM
Oh gosh, I HAVE heard of that. It's pretty horrifying.

01-21-2009, 12:33 PM
I've heard of it too, but thanks for the reminder; another good reason to remember not to leave the house without my cloth bags!!

01-21-2009, 02:04 PM
wow. I like to consider myself informed to global events but I'm embarrassed to admit that I NEVER knew about this :(

I found someones blog post ( about it. There are 6 of these *garbage islands* floating around the earth! 3 million tons. How many zeros is that!??!

The miracle of plastic has been around only 50 years, but some forms of it may take 100,000 years to fully degrade."

yeah... that's it. I'm not even using plastic bags to pick up after my dog anymore!

Thanks for posting about this. It really opened my eyes.

01-21-2009, 02:55 PM
I did not know that the bottle tops were not recyclable - as I am very conscious about recycling as much as possible. That's it for the bottled water!

Thank you very much for posting this. I was aware of the garbage island but of course I didn't think I was contributing to it :nono:

01-21-2009, 04:26 PM
wow. I like to consider myself informed to global events but I'm embarrassed to admit that I NEVER knew about this :(

I didn't know either. That was very informative and eye opening!! I've slowly been buying the cloth/reuseable bags at the grocery store, hopefully that'll help a tad...What do you do about the bag your newspaper comes in? We use those to pick up after the dogs...but they still go in the trash...and I honestly don't know if they're recyclable...this is going to prompt some research on my part!!:eek:

01-21-2009, 04:28 PM
its a sickening sight!

01-22-2009, 08:51 AM
I didn't know about this until we did the unit at school and watched a movie on it. What's really scary is that fish constantly eat the tiny pieces of plastic because they resemble their normal food. Bigger fish then eat the smaller fish and guess who then eats the bigger fish? I don't like fish, but I do like certain types of seafood which means I am ingesting plastic as well...

01-22-2009, 10:14 AM
Thank you so much! I too was unaware of this. I am now going to make my own canvas bags. As most of the bags that you can buy from the store for .99 are made from post consumer plastics. What happens to them when they rip and are no longer reusable? One store here replaces them for free. But what do they do with the broken ones? At least with home made ones we can wash them and mend them. As for poop scoop for the dog. What can we use? I guess I could use an empty can to scoop then drop in a garbage can (the poop not the can). Hmm any thoughts? We already reduced the water bottle use. But as DH is a truck driver. We do still use 1-2 cases a month for him as he does not have water available to him when ever he needs it.