The great Pacific garbage patch
As people throw their unwanted goods into the ocean, the Plastic Vortex continues to grow.
Last Modified: 24 Apr 2010 10:27 GMT

In the middle of the Pacific Ocean floats a giant swirl of garbage - some scientists say it is twice the size of France - called the Plastic Vortex.

For decades, as people around the world have been tossing their unwanted goods into the ocean, it has been building. The ocean streams that stretch from the US to Japan create a spiral that keeps the garbage trapped in one place.


Send us your views and get your voice on the air

Since these are international waters, no one is pushing to clean it up, and no government is taking responsibility for the problem, even as the toxic plastic particles are being eaten by fish, which eventually make it to the human food chain.

To find out what is being done about the Plastic Vortex, Riz speaks with the man who discovered the patch 13 years ago, Captain Charles Moore, the founder of the Algalita Marine Research Foundation.

This episode of the Riz Khan show can be seen from Tuesday, December 21, 2010 at 1630GMT, with repeats airing at 2030GMT, and the next day at 0130GMT.

Al Jazeera
Topics in this article
Featured on Al Jazeera
UNHCR says hundreds of people trapped in Yaloke town risk death if they are not evacuated to safety urgently.
'Justice for All' demonstrations swell across the US over the deaths of African Americans in police encounters.
Six former Guantanamo detainees are now free in Uruguay with some hailing the decision to grant them asylum.
Disproportionately high number of Aboriginal people in prison highlights inequality and marginalisation, critics say.
Long-standing dispute over Christian use of the word 'Allah' raises concerns about a very un-Merry Christmas.
The threat posed by ISIL has prompted thousands of young Kurds to join the PKK.
Baja California - with its own grim history of disappeared people - finds a voice in the fight against violence.
Russian feminist rockers fight system holding 700,000 - the world's largest per capita prison population after the US.
Weeks of growing protests against Muslims continue in Dresden with 15,000 hitting the streets last Monday.