A Giant Floating Trash Collector Will Try To Scoop Up The Great Pacific Garbage Patch

Submitted by: trimble 4 months ago in News & Politics Science


Marine biologists who study the problem say at this point things are so bad that it’s worth a shot.

An excerpt from King 5 News: On Sept. 8, an ungainly, 2,000-foot-long contraption will steam under the Golden Gate Bridge in what’s either a brilliant quest or a fool's errand.

Dubbed the Ocean Cleanup Project, this giant sea sieve consists of pipes that float at the surface of the water with netting below, corralling trash in the center of a U-shaped design.

The purpose of this bizarre gizmo is as laudable as it is head-scratching: to collect millions of tons of garbage from what's known as the Great Pacific Garbage Patch, which can harm and even kill whales, dolphins, seals, fish and turtles that consume it or become entangled in it, according to researchers at Britain's University of Plymouth.

The project is the expensive, untried brainchild of a 23-year-old Dutch college dropout named Boyan Slat, who was so disgusted by the plastic waste he encountered diving off Greece as a teen that he has devoted his life to cleaning up the mess.

Along with detractors who want to prioritize halting the flow of plastics into the ocean, the Dutch nonprofit gathered support from several foundations and philanthropists, including billionaire Salesforce founder Marc Benioff. In 2017, the Ocean Cleanup Project received $5.9 million in donations and reported reserves from donations in previous years of $17 million.
There are 14 comments:
Male 13,391
I don't get why the militaries of countries don't get together, make huge nets and just comb it all to pick it up.
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6,900
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6,900
well that is cute. it like using a thimble to empty a lake. 
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Male 2,167
dm2754 If the lake really needed to be emptied, and all I had was a thimble, I would get started. Maybe I'll find that it doesn't need to be completely emptied. Maybe others will bring their thimbles. 
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Male 9,481
semichisam01 Damn. That is some really profound philosophy there, and I kid you not. ~ponders~ I like it.
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Male 2,167
squrlz4ever Decades ago, I stopped explaining to people when I was serious and when I was spoofing. I try to stick to that, because it drives people away and simplifies my life. But I would like to be serious for a one-off moment:
I learned early on that the universe is life-averse and would as soon kill me as coddle me. I decided then that I would be a moving target. 
I learned when my mother was in a nursing home a quarter-century ago that there will be plenty of time for sitting around by-and-by. I decided that if I was going to end my life sitting and thinking, I wanted as much as possible to think about.
If I have a philosophy, it is 'get off your ass, and do something'. If it's not the optimum thing to do, that optimum thing will manifest itself as you work. If you sit on your ass, nothing will manifest itself but your ass.
{We now return you to your regular programming.}
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Male 9,481
semichisam01 I enjoyed that pause for philosophical discourse/public service announcement. Thank you!
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Male 2,755
Not sure that this is as big a problem as people like to think most of it will eventually degrade and sink or just become part the ocean.
  I don't think that we should ignore it trying to clean it is a good Idea. But what we need to do is stop the problem from the source.  As much as americans jump up and down blaming straws and such we do a reasonable job policing our trash, and we need to keep telling our children to pick it up and put in a trash can. I have seen a great difference just sense I was a child here in the States. Numerus cross country trips and in the 60s the trash on the side of the roads was horrendous. We can do much better.
  But back to the garbage patch most of the trash comes not from the U.S or even Europe but the Asian and African areas of the world. One of the most recent survays show it to be literally 90% from only 10 rivers. 

    https://www.scientificamerican.com/article/stemming-the-plastic-tide-10-rivers-contribute-most-of-the-plastic-in-the-oceans/

  There has to be  international pressure put on these places to do there part in stopping this pollution now, before it does become a untenable  problem.
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Male 2,130
Option 1: It's too much, fuck it let's do something else
Option 2: I can't do anything about that other stuff but I can do this, let's do it.

Seems like simple logic to me.
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Male 2,825
At least they’re trying something. I keep reading about this wondering why somebody isn’t having a Gru moment. LIGHTBULB! I can make bags of money off this.
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Male 1,864
I like these posts.
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Male 158
It's pretty bad when *experts* are basically saying ... "Situation is fucked, hell give it a try, whatever" ....
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Male 18,342
Good luck with that.

  1. The patch isn't as dense as the mapping shows. Single pieces may be hundreds of yards apart.
  2. As the video points out, it's not all on the surface.
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Male 9,481
Great post. Keep this science content coming, Trimble. Thanks!
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