Millions of tons of garbage are swept into the ocean every second and while that may seem shocking, roughly 1.4 billion tons of trash end up in the ocean every year. In fact, the amount of garbage in the ocean doubles every decade. Some parts of the ocean are even covered in floating islands of garbage; one such manmade island is called the Great Pacific garbage patch.
This steadily increasing problem affects animals as well as humans and ocean animals are particularly at risk. Some aquatic creatures end up eating indigestible plastics which can cause suffocation, perforated bowels, and death. They can also get tangled up in loose nets or stringy debris and lose the ability to move freely.
Some people are trying the to tackle this titanic issue. Boyan Slat, for example, is pioneering a new technique that could reduce the amount of ocean trash within the next few years by using a high tech magnet system. There are numerous efforts to eliminate ocean pollution but we are a long way from a solution. For now, all we can do is support these endeavors and share images like the ones below to increase awareness of this global affliction.