The Great Pacific Garbage Patch

110315-N-IC111-592 WAKUYA, Japan (March 15, 2011) An aerial view of damage to Wakuya, Japan after a 9.0 magnitude earthquake and subsequent tsunami devastated the area in northern Japan. Ships and aircraft from the Ronald Reagan Carrier Strike Group are conducting search and rescue operations and re-supply missions as directed in support of Operation Tomodachi throughout northern Japan. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 3rd Class Alexander Tidd/Released)

The Great Pacific Garbage Patch, which is also know as the Pacific Trash Vortex, has been a major problem in our world but nobody really knows about it because it doesn’t get a lot of publicity. The patch was discovered in 1997 but has been determined to have been there for around 40 years before. The size of the patch is estimated to be twice the size of Texas and is 9 feet deep, and its expected to double in 10 years. This came about because of the North Pacific Subtropical Convergence Zone and its a few hundred kilometers from the north of Hawaii. This is an ocean gyre and that means that it is a system of circular ocean currents formed by the Earth’s wind patterns and the forces from the earth The convergence zone is where the warm water from the South Pacific meets the cold water of the Arctic. The current that the garbage patch is in, the current comes all the way from the west coast of North America to the coast of Japan. Its located between the U.S. and Hawaii.

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