This Floating Barrier Has Wiped Out 250,000 Pounds Of Trash From Great Pacific
By Nicole Rodrigues, 02 Aug 2022
In 2018, nonprofit The Ocean Cleanup launched a notion to clear up 80,000 tons of plastic from the Great Pacific Garbage Patch (GPGP). Also known as the Pacific trash vortex, this area in the North Pacific Ocean was discovered in 1997 where an estimated 1.8 trillion pieces of plastic are thought to reside beneath the surface.
The Ocean Cleanup has just announced a successful venture via LinkedIn where a quarter of a million pounds of trash has been collected by the organization’s ‘System 002’. The device is a floating barrier used to collect debris that has been washed away by the currents of the sea.
‘System 002’ is an upgrade from the initial ‘System 001’. The team replaced the initial anchors with water-borne parachutes to bring mobility to the net.
The device underwent weeks of testing in 2021 before being deployed. The result was a whopping 223,445 pounds of waste collected. This took over 45 trips to achieve and covered an area roughly the size of Rhode Island. The total size of the GPGP is estimated to be the size of France, as a reference.
While that may sound like a large number, it will in fact take the organization another estimated 999 missions before the vortex is clear. And that is only if no other plastic enters the ocean from now on.
Still, the team is determined to make the ocean plastic free by 2040, and to do so, ‘System 003’ is currently in the works.
The upgraded plan will include the device being 10 times larger than its siblings. To aid this, the group is also creating methods to prevent garbage from lakes and rivers from making its way into the ocean.
More related news