Plastic Islands Larger Than Texas Float in the Pacific

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America's beaches are littered with plastic, but the problem is even worse in the waters of the Pacific Ocean. Photo: Plastic Paradise

America’s beaches are littered with plastic, but the problem is even worse in the waters of the Pacific Ocean. Photo: Plastic Paradise

Seeing Repercussions from 15 Years Ago

“This film is to make people realize what is happening with the plastics that they use every day,” she says. “Plastic is so ubiquitous; we touch it every day. From polyester to credit cards, it’s something very tangible. I want them to know what happens when it leaves their hands.”

The Great Pacific Garbage Patch is made up of two large masses of trash, known individually as the Western and Eastern Pacific Garbage Patches, near the Midway Atoll. That large island in the Pacific has been best known as the site of a famous battle during World War II, but it now has become a massive floating dump where the two garbage patches merge.

The Eastern Garbage Patch floats between Hawaii and California, and, according to the LA Times, scientists estimate it is about twice as large as Texas. The Western Garbage Patch is east of Japan and west of Hawaii, and each of the patches collects trash from all over the world.

“It was baffling to be able to go to the Midway Atoll and see something that I could have played with as a child,” she says. “When we throw these things away, they aren’t just gone. We are just now seeing the repercussions of our waste from 15 years ago. We have to change this.”

Sun says that every single piece of plastic that has been created since the 19th century is still somewhere on the planet. The film shows graphic, heart-wrenching images of the toll it’s taking on the wildlife and the environment, and in the film, Sun talks with scientists, researchers, influencers and volunteers who discuss the effects that today’s plastic consumption is having on the planet. The film also reveals that the problem goes deeper than the average person ever imagined, and that the solution is going to take a global commitment.

Sun’s film looks at how chemically treated plastic is regularly being ingested by fish, and how this harms people who regularly eat fish. It also shows how the coral reefs in the oceans are being destroyed by this growing island of plastic.

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