The Great Pacific Garbage Patch is growing at an exponential rate

March 22, 2018 by  
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Scientists recently found that the Great Pacific Garbage Patch – now three times the size of France – is showing signs of exponential growth. In a new study published in the journal Nature , researchers provide a detailed analysis of the garbage patch after a monumental effort that required two planes and 18 boats to complete. “We wanted to have a clear, precise picture of what the patch looked like,” Laurent Lebreton, study lead author and lead oceanographer for the Ocean Cleanup Foundation , told the Washington Post . The study estimates that the mass of the garbage patch is four to sixteen times bigger than previously thought, highlighting the urgency of confronting global plastic pollution. The Ocean Cleanup Foundation worked in collaboration with scientists from New Zealand , the United States, Britain, France, Germany and Denmark . The study provides an in-depth account of the mass concentration within the Garbage Patch. Although the mass of the Garbage Patch appears to be growing, the study concludes that the area of the patch has remained relatively stable. This means that the Garbage Patch is simply becoming more dense. Related: The Ocean Cleanup launches San Francisco base in Pacific trash-busting bid The study also found that 46% of the Pacific Garbage Patch’s mass is composed of disposed fishing nets. “This suggests we might be underestimating how much fishing debris is floating in the oceans,” Chelsea Rochman, an assistant professor at the University of Toronto who studies marine plastic but was not associated with the study, told the Washington Post . “Entanglement and smothering from nets is one of the most detrimental observed effects we see in nature.” For all of the garbage floating in the Patch, scientists expect that much of the world’s plastic pollution is sinking, with much of that damage happening out of sight. + Nature Via the Washington Post Images via Depositphotos (1) and the Ocean Cleanup Foundation

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The Great Pacific Garbage Patch is growing at an exponential rate

Scientists have a plan to cool the Earth with a sprinkle of salt

March 22, 2018 by  
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Could salt help soothe our climate woes? Senior scientist Robert Nelson of the Planetary Science Institute seems to think so. At a recent Lunar and Planetary Science Conference in Texas, Nelson suggested that sprinkling salt above clouds could hold off sunlight and cool our planet, according to Science Magazine . But as with many geoengineering ideas, this one isn’t without controversy. Finely powdered salt injected into the upper troposphere might help humanity stave off some of the impacts of climate change, according to Nelson. His suggestion isn’t too far off those of other scientists who want to introduce microscopic particles into the stratosphere to reflect sunshine into space , imitating the impact of volcanic eruptions that have served to temporarily cool Earth. But his might be more benign than others, Science Magazine said. The senior scientist tossed out alumina or sulfur dioxide: the first could lead to chronic disease, embedding in our lungs if we inhaled it; the second could lead to acid rain or erode the ozone layer. Related: Trump administration could open door to geoengineering Instead, he turned to salt: it’s more reflective than alumina, according to Science Magazine, and harmless for people. Nelson also thinks if salt were crushed into tiny particles in the correct shape and diffused randomly, the mineral wouldn’t block infrared heat the Earth releases. Volcanologist Matthew Watson of the University of Bristol is one scientist who has called out potential problems with Nelson’s approach. He led an ultimately canceled geoengineering experiment, in which his team considered injecting salt in the stratosphere. But the substance contains a lot of chlorine , which he said could help destroy ozone. With limited amounts of water in the stratosphere, and salt so attracted to it, even a small amount could impact the formation of wispy clouds; we have know idea what consequences this would trigger. Nelson might be able to address issues by injecting salt into the upper troposphere instead of the stratosphere — at least, that’s what he hopes. But he said we should still work to curb carbon emissions , saying, “This would be a palliative, not a [long-term] solution.” Via Science Magazine Images via Depositphotos and Wikimedia Commons

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Scientists have a plan to cool the Earth with a sprinkle of salt

Ocean Cleanup Project launches San Francisco base in Pacific trash-busting bid

February 14, 2018 by  
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The Ocean Cleanup Project seeks to dismantle the Great Pacific Garbage Patch , guided by an ambitious design concept and the development of new technology to tackle the pollution threat. First conceived in 2013 by aerospace engineering student Boyan Slat, the Ocean Cleanup Project has recently announced the location of its home base, a former naval station in San Francisco Bay . From here, the Ocean Cleanup Project will manufacture, then launch, the first of its giant trash-collecting booms. With any luck, the inaugural trash-busting voyage will set sail in mid-2018. In addition to its strategic location, the former Alameda Naval Station in San Francisco Bay is a location that carries special significance for Slat. “Next to Alameda’s major historical military significance, it was here that the famous car chase scene in The Matrix Reloaded was filmed, and it was home to some of the best experiments of my favorite childhood TV show, MythBusters,” said Slat . “We’re honored to be allowed to use this site as the assembly yard for the world’s first ocean cleanup system. Hopefully, we will make some history here as well.” Related: Could France-sized ocean garbage patch become 196th nation? The Ocean Cleanup Project ‘s 2,000-foot-long system harnesses natural currents to catch trash in passive, strategically located arms, under which wildlife should be able to swim. While some have criticized the project for the potential environmental damage and cost, the group has committed to undergoing environmental impact studies at every stage in development and production. The team has already conducted aerial surveys of the Great Pacific Garbage Patch and developed a prototype system in the Netherlands. By the end of this year, we should know more about whether the Ocean Clean Project’s design is an effective tool to fight pollution. Via New Atlas Images via The Ocean Cleanup Project

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Ocean Cleanup Project launches San Francisco base in Pacific trash-busting bid

World’s first ocean trash recon mission is complete – and the results are way worse than we thought

October 4, 2016 by  
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The Ocean Cleanup just completed its first aerial reconnaissance scan of the Great Pacific Garbage Patch to assess how serious the problem of ocean plastic has become – and the results are worse than anyone expected. At a press conference in Mountain View, California, teenage inventor, CEO and founder Boyan Slat announced that the organization spotted over 1000 large pieces of plastic debris in just 2 hours. Aerial Expedition – Ocean Force One Tour Take a tour aboard the Ocean Force One, which is set to map the Great Pacific Garbage Patch this weekend. Posted by The Ocean Cleanup on Thursday, September 29, 2016 The Ocean Cleanup Aerial Expedition is using a modified C- 130 Hercules aircraft, finely tuned human observers, and a variety of scanning equipment based on lidar technology . Related: Boyan Slat’s Ocean Cleanup takes to the air to survey the Great Pacific Garbage Patch They reported their initial findings, confirming the expected overabundance of plastic waste between the size of .5 meter or 1.5 feet and larger in the ocean garbage patch. While the crew only flew across the northern boundary of the patch for 2.5 hours, they still spotted over one thousand items. Anna Schwarz, a research assistant who was sitting right next to the open door on the flight, said: “It was unbelievable, there was trash floating everywhere, as far as the eye could see” Flight one successfully completed! Initial results will be shared at press conference Monday 11am PT. Posted by The Ocean Cleanup on Sunday, October 2, 2016 Watch the video above to get a glimpse of the first flight Laurent Le Breton, the Modeler on aerial research team described the cumulative impression of the ocean trash in this poetic way: “It’s like looking at the night sky filled with stars. You can see them everywhere you look, with space in between all of the large chunks. When you zoom in close you can only see one at a time, but from high up in the air, they extend infinitely in every direction.” Ocean Cleanup’s aerial solution to gathering data on this vulnerable stretch of ocean halfway between the California Coast and Hawaii began in August of 2015 with its breakthrough Mega Expedition project, which mapped an area of 3.5 million square kilometers. The follow-up Aerial Expedition in the Pacific Ocean is the first-ever aerial survey of of an ocean garbage patch and is focusing on the largest and most harmful pieces of debris, such as Ghost Nets. Once all of the flights are completed later this week, the findings from both expeditions will be published in a peer-reviewed paper early 2017. The Great Pacific Garbage Patch is a massive vortex of swirling plastic flotsam, in an area larger than the size of Texas – located about halfway between San Francisco, California and Hawaii. Floating garbage accumulates in this area due to the ocean currents, which swirl around in a vortex pattern, slowly consolidating floating garbage into the center of the gyre. The floating trash ranges from tiny microscopic plastic particles, to water bottles, plastic forks and spoons, plastic bags, to much larger chunks that can be over 1 meter across – including discarded fishing debris such as buoys and “Ghost Nets”. “Ghost Nets” are discarded nets, often many meters in diameter, which are notorious for ensnaring both sea life and ship propellers. + Ocean Cleanup https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=D41rO7mL6zM Images via Ocean Cleanup

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World’s first ocean trash recon mission is complete – and the results are way worse than we thought

INFOGRAPHIC: Our ocean plastic problem is quickly spiraling out of control

May 28, 2015 by  
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Try to imagine your life without plastic: it’s in your smartphone, your car, your clothing, your toiletries. All that plastic ends up somewhere, and more and more, that place is the ocean. In fact, every year, 6.4 million tons are dumped into the world’s oceans. Cleaning it up is becoming an overwhelming challenge – to put it into perspective, it would take 67 ships working for 1 year to clean up just 1% of the plastic in just the Northern Pacific. This infographic reveals the depth of the situation and how our plastic problem is quickly spiraling out of control. Read the rest of INFOGRAPHIC: Our ocean plastic problem is quickly spiraling out of control Permalink | Add to del.icio.us | digg Post tags: Gyres , infographic , ocean clean up , ocean garbage , ocean garbage patch , Ocean Plastic , pacific garbage patch , plastic gyres , plastic in the ocean , reader submission , trash ocean

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INFOGRAPHIC: Our ocean plastic problem is quickly spiraling out of control

Help the Ocean Cleanup Array Save the World’s Oceans From Plastic Pollution – Donate Now!

September 2, 2014 by  
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Plastic pollution is a global problem – the world’s oceans are filled with millions of tons of plastic particles that choke sea life and release hazardous toxins as they decompose. 19-year-old Boyan Slat has come up with a brilliant solution that could rid the seas of plastic pollution – and it’s proven by a year-long feasibility study – but he needs your help to make it a reality! Boyan’s Ocean Cleanup Array crowdfunding campaign has raised over 1.6 million dollars – but it has just 10 days left to hit its $2 million funding goal – so donate today to help clean the world’s oceans of plastic pollution! DONATE TO CLEAN THE WORLD’S OCEANS! > Permalink | Add to del.icio.us | digg Post tags: Boyan Slat , Boyan Slat array , cleaning plastic , cleaning trash , crowd sourcing ocean array , Crowdfunding , crowdfunding ocean array , garbage patch , interview , Ocean Array , ocean cleaning , ocean cleanup , Ocean Cleanup Array , Ocean Plastic , Ocean plastic cleanup , ocean trash cleanup , pacific garbage patch , sea patch , sea plastic , the ocean cleanup

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Help the Ocean Cleanup Array Save the World’s Oceans From Plastic Pollution – Donate Now!

Volkswagen Announces $36,265 Price Tag for 2015 e-Golf Electric Car

September 2, 2014 by  
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Volkswagen just announced the pricing details for its first electric car to be offered in the United States! The 2015 e-Golf will offer a 115 horsepower electric motor and a 24.2 kWh lithium-ion battery – and it’s set to arrive in November with a price tag starting at $36,265 before any federal or state tax credits are applied. Read the rest of Volkswagen Announces $36,265 Price Tag for 2015 e-Golf Electric Car Permalink | Add to del.icio.us | digg Post tags: electric car , electric motor , green car , green transportation , volkswagen , vw , VW e-Golf , vw electric car , VW EV , vw golf

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Volkswagen Announces $36,265 Price Tag for 2015 e-Golf Electric Car

Expedition Finds Permanent Plastic Islands Within the Great Pacific Garbage Patch

July 23, 2014 by  
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Back in 1997 Capt. Charles Moore discovered the Great Pacific Garbage Patch during a sailboat race from Los Angeles to Honolulu. Since then, many have tried to reduce the size of the patch , which is said to be the size of Texas . Unfortunately, Moore recently returned to the area and has discovered that permanent islands of plastic now exist within the patch. Read the rest of Expedition Finds Permanent Plastic Islands Within the Great Pacific Garbage Patch Permalink | Add to del.icio.us | digg Post tags: Boyan Slat , Captain Charles Moore , great pacific garbage patch , japan tsunami , Ocean Debris , Ocean Plastic , pacific garbage patch , Plastic Islands , plastic waste

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19-Year-Old’s Ocean Cleanup Array Could Clean Half the Pacific Garbage Patch in 10 Years, Study Shows

June 11, 2014 by  
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Last year we reported on teenage inventor Boyan Slat’s plans to create an Ocean Cleanup Array that could remove 7,250,000 tons of plastic waste from the world’s oceans. His proposal for an anchored network of floating booms and processing platforms received a lot of criticism – but now, just over a year later, Boyan is back with the results of a year-long investigation that shows his invention does offer a feasible method to rid the world’s oceans of plastic pollution. In fact, he claims that a single array could remove half of the plastic in the Great Pacific Garbage Patch in just 10 years. Read the rest of 19-Year-Old’s Ocean Cleanup Array Could Clean Half the Pacific Garbage Patch in 10 Years, Study Shows Permalink | Add to del.icio.us | digg Post tags: Boyan Slat , garbage patch , Gyres , Ocean Cleanup Array , pacific garbage patch , plastic fibres , plastic foodchain , plastic recycling , TED , The Ocean Cleanup Foundation

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19-Year-Old’s Ocean Cleanup Array Could Clean Half the Pacific Garbage Patch in 10 Years, Study Shows

Clunky Old School Bus Converted into a Sweet Earthy Home With a Wood-fired Stove

June 11, 2014 by  
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Clunky Old School Bus Converted into a Sweet Earthy Home With a Wood-fired Stove

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