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

Scientist to explore "plastic vortex" in the Pacific Ocean (4)

The search for new waste disposal methods

Figures released by the United Nations Environment Program (UNEP) indicate that on average around 13,000 pieces of garbage float in every square kilometer of sea. The figure is even higher for the five major ocean currents, particularly that of the North Pacific.

Woodring said the "plastic vortex" is a mystery for scientists: "It is like going to outer space."

Dufour said that acknowledgement of the seriousness of the problem is vital for the future marine eco-environment. "Importance is an understatement, it is imperative. It will take many years to understand and fix the problem."

Dufour believes the real solution lies on land. "We need to provide the means, globally, to dispose of our waste," he said.

As the "plastic vortex" is located in international waters, the clean-up work undertaken during the expedition will not obtain support or assistance from any government. "There is no jurisdiction, no government who is entirely responsible, so there has been no push to clean it up. The world doesn't know it is out there," said Woodring.

By People's Daily Online
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