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vega1860 11-09-2012 04:32 PM

Garbage Island
 
I am getting really steamed.:hothead

I have been editing and uploading our daily video logs and watching the footage we shot in July and am again seized with anger and despair over the conditions we found on our latest transit of the North Pacific sailing from Hawaii to Alaska. Day after day, starting at about Day 8, the amount of trash floating in the water is appalling! The amount that has sunk below the surface must be horrific.

All you ever see is images of the "Pristine" ocean. Let me tell you: it is not pristine out there. It is a garbage dump. I have vowed to do as much as I can to increase public awareness of this problem. I don't know what else can be done except maybe to get people to generate less trash and to dispose of it properly.

I am trying not to be too heavy handed in our videos; after all, we want people to watch them and be entertained, but we are showing the reality that most people will never see. I just hope we have some small impact and maybe cause someone to be more careful disposing of that styrofoam packing material or plastic container.

Minnewaska 11-09-2012 04:40 PM

Re: Garbage Island
 
People that dump intentionally should be water boarded.

However, storms like Hurricane Sandy and tsunamis like that in Japan put a lot of garbage in the water that was never intended.

aa3jy 11-09-2012 04:53 PM

Re: Garbage Island
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by vega1860 (Post 946097)
I am getting really steamed.:hothead

I have been editing and uploading our daily video logs and watching the footage we shot in July and am again seized with anger and despair over the conditions we found on our latest transit of the North Pacific sailing from Hawaii to Alaska. Day after day, starting at about Day 8, the amount of trash floating in the water is appalling! The amount that has sunk below the surface must be horrific.

All you ever see is images of the "Pristine" ocean. Let me tell you: it is not pristine out there. It is a garbage dump. I have vowed to do as much as I can to increase public awareness of this problem. I don't know what else can be done except maybe to get people to generate less trash and to dispose of it properly.

I am trying not to be too heavy handed in our videos; after all, we want people to watch them and be entertained, but we are showing the reality that most people will never see. I just hope we have some small impact and maybe cause someone to be more careful disposing of that styrofoam packing material or plastic container.

Are you aware that our own U.S. NAVY is still exempt from the MARPOL rules..

SEAWASTE

remetau 11-09-2012 05:14 PM

Re: Garbage Island
 
Reduction in waste is key to the issue. We need to quite producing so much plastic crap, but in order to do that, the demand for such cheap plastic crap needs to be eliminated.

vega1860 11-09-2012 05:28 PM

Re: Garbage Island
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by remetau (Post 946115)
Reduction in waste is key to the issue. We need to quite producing so much plastic crap, but in order to do that, the demand for such cheap plastic crap needs to be eliminated.

Packaging, driven by marketing and anti-theft concerns, is a huge contributor. Drives me nuts, all the trash we have to dispose of after a trip to Costco, before we even bring our supplies aboard.

billyruffn 11-09-2012 05:32 PM

Re: Garbage Island
 
Some of that, perhaps most would have come from the tsunami in Japan. Apparently, there is a huge raft of flotsam working it's way around the N. Pacific. When we did the HI to AK passage in 2006 we saw no garbage. In fact, on the 4800 nm trip from Costa Rica to HI I saw only 2 plastic bottles. Ocean was pretty clean back then.

kd3pc 11-09-2012 05:35 PM

Re: Garbage Island
 
for decades, NYC and other mid atlantic states barged garbage and wastes out to the ocean and just chucked overboard...I think until the 90's when they started trucking some 1,000's of tons daily to PA/MD/VA and even NC...

then there is the whole sewerage issue...some states still run long pipes out and pump the marginally treated stuff in to the ocean...

until this nation focuses on the other parts of the recycle cycle..like reduce, reuse .....the oceans will be the easiest place to chuck it. Just look at any intersection at all the garbage that washes in to the storm sewer drains and out to the oceans....

floridajaxsailor 11-09-2012 06:17 PM

.
 
huge issue
period

Great Pacific garbage patch & all these things you mention are an enormous problem~ God bless you for working on it
I talk about it as much as I can at least twice a week
epic issue
-JD

Philzy3985 11-09-2012 06:34 PM

Re: Garbage Island
 
Agreed.

Public awareness is key here. Recycling, reusing, etc.. As a surfer and sailor, I explain to non-water people that the ocean isn't pristine like they think, it's more like a diluted pool of trash. Most especially around populated areas, where rain just creates run-off of everything on land flowing into the ocean. LOil, littered garbage, dead animals (seriously), chemicals, you name it, it flows into the ocean. There isn't much one person can do personally, but when I walk back from each surf, I pick up what I can on the beach, it's usually grocery bags and food bag wrappers. I've seen much worse after storms though.

The other day I was sailing off of Los Angelese and saw a soda can with japanese (my guess) labels, I assume drifting from the tsunami. I'm thinking about bringing one of those pool cleaning nets and when I take guests sailing, just having them swoop some things up if they get bored. The thing I see most commonly in the ocean are party balloons all leaking air and tied together, floating on the surface.

The whole disposal of trash is an entirely immense issue, but for people who enjoy the oceans and lakes, seeing it treated like a land fill is awful. The sea is such a vulnerable and easy place to let waste seemingly dissappear.

There's some strong voices out there sailing, on swellvoyage.com, Liz has seen up close the amounts trash surrounding "beautiful" indonesian islands and other places.

I've been in traffic before and witnessed someone litter out their window. I got out my truck, walked up to their door and picked it up, said "Excuse me I think you dropped this" and put it back in the persons face. The person sat speechless. Of course, I don't recommend doing this, there's some crazies out there. I chose this woman because she had kids in her car, figured she wouldn't act insane in front of them and maybe they'll get the message too.

I'm thankful that most sailors aren't contributors to the problem.

tomperanteau 11-09-2012 07:25 PM

Re: Garbage Island
 
Agreed completely, Chuck.


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