Project Kaisei Tackles the Infamous Island of Trash Project Kaisei Tackles the Infamous Island of Trash
The Planet

Project Kaisei Tackles the Infamous Island of Trash

by Andrew Price

April 24, 2009
We make 60 billion tons of plastic a year and a lot of it ends up in our oceans, where it proceeds to not biodegrade. Because of the way ocean currents work, this immortal plastic trash collects into a few floating "garbage patches." The most infamous of these is the "western garbage patch," which floats between San Francisco and Hawaii and is twice the size of Texas.Enter Project Kaisei. Their mission is to study the effects of plastic pollution in our oceans and figure out "how to capture, detoxify, and recycle it into diesel fuel." Their goal is to have recently out-of-work fishermen trolling the ocean for plastic trash and using it to make the fuel that powers their ships.A team from Project Kaisei is heading to the western "Plastic Vortex," as they call it, this summer to start gathering data and planning a cleanup. They'll be making a documentary of the whole process for National Geographic. You can contribute online via the Project Kaisei site or learn more about the plastic in our oceans with this great interactive piece from the Los Angeles Times.Thanks, Sebastian.
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Project Kaisei Tackles the Infamous Island of Trash