What if I told you grilled plastic water bottle and sautéed styrofoam packaging peanuts are on the menu for tonight’s dinner? “Ewww, gross,” you’d think to yourself. “There is no way I would consciously eat plastic!” But would you consider ground up plastic yogurt cups as a seasoning on top of your fresh fish? “No way!” But, what if it was ground up even finer and used as flavor inside your “fresh” fish? That would be OK, right? “Still no way!” I would agree. That dietary plastic is for the birds! Well, technically it should not be for them either….
What if I told you there is an organization out there doing everything they can to prevent plastic from becoming a dietary supplement? Chances are you would believe me… meet 5 Gyres. Their vision “is to witness plastic pollution decline in the environment until it is no longer found in the world’s oceans.” Their mission “is to conduct research and communicate about the global impact of plastic pollution in the world’s oceans and employ strategies to eliminate the accumulation of plastic pollution in the 5 subtropical gyres.”
Not only is the 5 Gyres mission really cool, but their founders are too. Anna Cummins and Dr. Marcus Eriksen started the concept several years ago and are devoting their entire lives to see this through. I had the pleasure of meeting Anna a few years back and this couple is the real deal. Since they started the organization they now have a beautiful daughter and are even more driven to end plastic pollution to secure a clean future for her as well.
So what the heck is a gyre? In the ocean there are consistent currents driven by the earth’s rotation and coupled with wind known as “gyres.” Plastic trash can accumulate in these massive slow rotating currents and there are 5 major locations in the world’s oceans. Just to give you an idea of scale, the North Pacific Gyre is twice the size of the U.S. and plastic can remain there for decades or longer.
The results from their last expedition are mind blowing! They studied the North Atlantic Gyre, which previously had not been sampled, and out of all the samples (taken every 50 nautical miles) every single sample had traces of plastic in them. Let me back up. .. Not 20% of the samples, but EVERY SINGLE SAMPLE!
So what can you do right now to help prevent plastic in the ocean we share? Log onto www.indiegogo.com/projects/klean-kanteen-5-gyres-plastic-free-oceans-campaign and make a donation which will ensure 5 Gyres can continue to do this pivotal work. Big or small any donation will greatly help. With this recent campaign to raise $15,000 by July 28th, 2014 each dollar you donate will be matched dollar for dollar by the amazing Klean Kanteen, an ethical family run business we have also had the pleasure of meeting. So essentially whatever you donate during this time frame will be doubled. Seriously, you can help right now and it is easy to make a donation. Just do it! (Oops, hope Nike doesn’t see that one!)
About Charles Perry
Charles is a bit of a renaissance man, a citizen of the planet, a building inspector by trade, devoted father & husband and one of the funniest people he knows. He is deeply passionate about peace, social justice and respect and equality for all living creatures. Charles thought up the World Minded ideology several years ago and has made it his goal to inspire people around the world to care for themselves, others and the planet we share by exposing what’s right in the world. He resides in the Eastern Sierras and loves life in the mountains, but longs for the beach because of some ridiculous “grass is always greener” notion.