Posts Tagged ‘Doug Woodring’

Capturing the plastic vortex

Friday, August 7, 2009

A few days ago, a “team of innovators, scientists, environmentalists, ocean lovers, sailors, and sports enthusiasts” set sail for the Great Pacific Garbage Patch to take a closer look at the gyre in the hopes of evenutally figuring out a way to clean that shit up. The expedition is called Project Kasisei. You may remember an earlier mention of this ambitious plan featuring the co-founder, entrepeneur Doug Woodring (not to be confused with David de Rothschild‘s Plastiki).

Photo by Robert Sanford via Flickr

Photo by Robert Sanford via Flickr

As you’ll recall, one of the cool things about this project is that they will be looking at the beast from all angles, especially below. The fleet includes two vessels, the Kaisei and the New Horizon. And you can track their progress day by day, as each ship has its own blog. Check them here and here. More to come as the crew reaches their destination.

Plastic Vortex

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

A group of scientists wants to get to the bottom of the Great Pacific Garbage Patch. The AFP reports that the great swirling mass of plastic and other trash between Hawaii and mainland US will be the destination of a 50-day expedition  from San Francisco to the Eastern Garbage Patch and back.

Underwater trash photo via RedOrbit

Underwater trash photo via RedOrbit

The scientists will take special nets with them designed to scoop up samples of even the tiniest plastic debris and will treat their voyage to the vortex  of plastic beneath the sea like a journey into space.

According to RedOrbit:

The United Nations Environment Program has estimated that some 13,000 pieces of garbage exist in every square kilometer of the ocean, but the issue becomes magnified in these ocean vortexes.

Leaders of the trip said the particles have composed a toxic gumbo that threatens the wellbeing of fish in the region.

“That means the little piece of plastic the fish eats is actually a little toxic bomb,” said Doug Woodring, an entrepreneur and conservationist who lives in Hong Kong and will lead the expedition.

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