Tom Jones Finished Big in the Campaign for a Plastic Free Ocean – Now We Need Your Contribution to Implement the Plan
Tom Jones’ world-record finish was big indeed with coverage by New York metro area media and especially by great stories aired nationally by FOX NEWS. Tom successfully completed one of the most grueling ultra-endurance events ever undertaken. Now, we are asking you to join us in a task of huge importance. To date, we have raised 1/3 of the $500,000 needed to create a model program for cleaning up the world’s oceans and tidal zones. We are now getting the national news coverage that this story deserves and it is making a difference, but your contribution is needed to make the Plastic Free Ocean mission a reality.
A number of organizations continue to study the scope and composition of plastic that is accumulating in the five ocean gyres. This is valuable from a scientific standpoint, but it is not directly addressing what we now know is the largest killer of marine wildlife, and the single most insidious and pervasive human health threat.
The time has come for aggressive action. Plastic Free Ocean has gathered the critical information and identified the necessary technology. In the simplest and most abbreviated form, here is what your contribution can do.
- Purchase boats specially designed to collect plastic waste in tidal zones where it is the densest and most accessible, closest to cost-effective transport, and where it has not yet broken down into particles too small to be recovered. The gyres get all the media and research attention, but we have determined that it would be impractical and tremendously expensive to attack these huge, far-flung areas. Tens of millions of tons of plastic waste can be collected from tidal zones before it escapes into the open ocean where it would be quickly broken down by the action of waves, wind and sunlight. Cleaning up tidal zones is the fastest and most practical way to reduce human health effects plaguing areas where concentrations are greatest. Grants to train and pay local labor for collection, compaction, loading and transport operations will benefit local economies where model programs are set up.
- Fund transportation of collected plastic waste to facilities where new technology exists that can handle mixed, unsorted plastic waste and convert it into useful, durable, environmentally benign products. This is a necessary part of the overall solution. Collecting and land-filling plastic waste simply moves the problem around – xenoestrogens, toxins and carcinogens still leach into groundwater supplies affecting crops, livestock and human drinking water supplies. You can watch a video describing this amazing reprocessing technology here:
- Support the development and dissemination of a curriculum about how to reduce dangerous and excessive uses of plastics, and the proper handling and recycling of plastic waste. Plastic Free Ocean is working with America’s Schools Programs (http://www.americas-schools.org/home.php) to develop this curriculum for 110,000 U.S. K-12 schools and schools in other countries. Currently, mankind is putting plastic into the marine environment faster than it could ever be removed, and many initial uses of plastic – especially for food packaging and storage – constitute a major health risk. Education is the key to protecting wildlife, the environment and the health of future generations.
Studies and observation of oceanic plastic waste have gone on for years and will continue. Plastic Free Ocean feels this work should focus on the possibility of neutralizing the most dangerous endocrine-disrupting compounds that are reducing reproduction rates throughout the marine food chain, and concentrating as they make their way up the food chain to us. Finding a way to remediate the unrecoverable plastic soup of the gyres should remain a long-term goal.
However, the most practical and effective actions that can make a real difference in the short term, and that can keep the problem from getting worse, are collection, transportation and reprocessing of tidal zone plastic, and youth education – these are the critical steps that can be undertaken now with sufficient funding.
Please support this critical mission. Make an online donation now. Tell your family members, friends and associates about Plastic Free Ocean and urge them to contribute.