Great Pacific Garbage Patch from Space

Trash Island in the Pacific Ocean

You may have heard that there is a large island of trash floating in the Pacific Ocean. This is actually just one of the trash islands on the planet.

Great Pacific Garbage Patch from Space
Great Pacific Garbage Patch from Space

It is comprised of tons of particles of trash (mainly plastic) that have gathered together due to the behavior of the ocean’s current. It contains many chemicals that are dangerous to living organisms. Many animals are killed from it because they mistake bits of trash as prey.

Great Pacific Garbage Patch on a world map
Great Pacific Garbage Patch on a world map

This also ends up affecting human health. As Thomas Morton puts it:

“Jelly fish and filter feeders eat the plastic particles, bigger fish eat those, even bigger fish eat those, and eventually we start eating these.”

Here is a breakdown of some of the factors going on that make this such a problem. has an excellent poster that defines these factors. See the full Pacific Garbage Patch article. The Great Pacific Garbage Patch The Great Pacific Garbage Patch

Trash Trailer

A Trashy TED Talk

‘Toxic: Garbage Island’ Documentary

Ideas to Stem the Tide

What can you do to help? Recycle. It is an issue of poor waste management. Remember: this is a very difficult problem to solve, and it won’t be fixed overnight. The best thing each of us can do is slowly try to reduce waste in our personal lives one step at a time.

Consider using glass containers instead of plastic where you can so you don’t toss more plastic into the trash.

See if you’re neighborhood has a recycling program so the plastics you can’t avoid using will be reused.

16 thoughts on “Trash Island in the Pacific Ocean”

  1. We should not ignore the fact that we regularly send research ships out to check on the floating waste. The most recent survey (2010) showed that the Garbage Patch simply does not exist. The trash is fairly wide spread (long trawls were required to net a useful amount of material) and there are no floating islands of trash. Some waste also has benefits, providing living surfaces for organisms, and some materials remove toxins from the water. And many breakdown over time as bacteria are quite capable of developing new abilities, just as a fungus has learned how to eat formica.

    Further more, the results indicate that the rate of trash entering the ocean is declining quite nicely as nations clean up their habits and ships clean up the methods.

    To assume that there is a Garbage Patch in every ocean is ingenuous and simply speculation as well as wrong, as there is no evidence.

  2. It’s quite telling when you purposely filter Comments to exclude input which contradicts your position. Shame on you.

    The “garbage” patches do not exist. There is some pollution but not anywhere as much as described above.

  3. It’s too bad that you lack the integrity to allow opposing views and observations to be posted.

    I posted regarding the latest survey of the Pacific garbage patch, which for all purposes does not exist. The other patches are fabrications, also. Their findings make this site meaningless.

    Good luck with your deluded, misleading agenda. I wonder how you can sleep well at night except for the fact that you revel in your ignorance and love to spread the dumbness.

  4. Oh, and I’ll spread the word that you are totally biased and filter comments to your own opinion.

  5. PAHAHAHA! That isn’t the Garbage Patch from space. The Garbage Patch is also not a “giant floating island of trash”. The garbage is dispersed unevenly through the area, not all on the surface. You usually can’t even see the trash from a boat, let alone space. And I don’t know what shape you think the Americas are, but… XD

  6. Every two years they send a ship out to look for the garbage patch in the Pacific. This year they found very little, had to troll for lengthy times to get a usable sample, and found that much of that trash was colonized and even beneficial to the ecosystem.

    The trash entering the oceans is dwindling very nicely, decreasing asymptotically. Rather than accumulating, it’s going away.

    The stupid assumption that there must be one in every ocean reveals the ignorance of these alarmists. The top picture above is of where? It certainly is not of any ocean and likely does not even show any trash.

    We do get trash on shores, mostly in bays and corners of harbors, but even this has been improving. We should always push for less and less, but it’s not as big a problem as it once was.

    The concept of sending fishermen out to seine the trash is also idiocy as they would starve for lack of trash to find. There just is not as much as claimed.

    Higley, PhD Biochem/Marine Biology

  7. It could be possible that there is a garbage patch, but not nearly as bad as they make it sound. You have to remember the current does make all of the garbage gather together at some point.

  8. This picture is not of the garbage patch, it’s actually a very large amount of plankton and similar creatures which are moved in the directions of the currents of the ocean. It’s actually quite amazing the extent and size of this creature, but it is not garbage and most definitely not the great garbage patch of infamy.

  9. Man this is sickening I can’t believe this!!! I don’t know how the world could do this! this must be fixed!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *