Wednesday, March 10, 2010

'Kon-Tiki' For The 21st Century

Three cheers for banking family scion David de Rothschild and the crew and sponsors of the Plastiki Expedition. They embark this month on a San Francisco-to-Sydney sail aboard a vessel constructed of recycled plastic to draw attention to the catastrophic dumping of plastic and other junk. CNN:

The Plastiki's journey will spotlight current environmental issues. En route to Australia, Plastiki will sail through the infamous North Pacific Gyre, now home to "The Great Garbage Patch," named due to the high levels of waste that have been drawn there by ocean currents. Estimated to be around the size of Texas, this contaminated area of ocean has by some estimates more plastic than food for marine life.

"I was astounded to hear that that there are places in our oceans where the ratio between plastic and plankton is 6-to-1," de Rothschild told CNN, referring to the area.

CNN says two of "Kon-Tiki" skipper Thor Heyerdahl's grandchildren are taking part, which is appropriate given the similar audacity of this venture to the Norwegian adventurer's 1947 exploit.

Greenpeace has an amazing graphic called "The Trash Vortex" that shows the drift of that garbage that's clogging up our seas.

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