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Home>>Sci-Edu >> Others
16:14, May 27, 2009

Scientist to explore "plastic vortex" in the Pacific Ocean (3)

Toxic substances will enter into the human food chain

Expedition organizers say that the "plastic vortex" has been broken down into particles which are so small that most of it cannot be seen on satellite pictures, but the poisonous waste is unknowingly vacuumed up by marine life and birds, and much of it is heavy with toxic chemicals.

On May 25, the Agence France-Presse cited Doug Woodring, the environmental protection expert who is expected to lead the expedition as saying, "that means the little pieces of plastic the fish eats is actually a little toxic bomb." The more terrible thing however, is the fact that large quantities of toxic substances will gradually enter the human food chain through marine life and birds.

In the expedition, ocean scientists will also examine waste in the vortex to find out whether it can be recycled or even used to create fuel.

Although the "plastic vortex" has already been visited before, the expedition will focus its attention on scientific research.

Jim Dufour, a senior engineer at the Scripps Institution of Oceanography who is responsible for the technology work on the expedition, said that on this trip they will research the impact caused by ocean surface pollutants and plastic waste on organisms, for the first time in human history.

A large amount of waste from the ocean accumulated on the bank

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