Plastic vortex crusader tells story of discovery

Posted: 10/24/2011 in all marine news

Mike Lee –

Capt. Charles Moore didn’t think much about plastic or where it ended up until he was sailing back from a trans-Pacific boat race in 1997.

Taking a shortcut through the North Pacific Gyre, a vast “oceanic desert” in the Pacific Ocean, Moore and his crew realized they were sailing through a kind of plastic soup – a vortex of fragments floating in international waters between Hawaii and the West Coast.

Moore, who lives in Long Beach, recently completed a book about his journey of discovery and everything came after. “Plastic Ocean” is a first-person account about how he started getting attention with peer-reviewed essays and lectures, and eventually became something of a cult hero in activist documentaries and numerous media appearances.

The book details the “plastic age” and ways to erase “our plastic footprint.” His ideas challenge even his supporters. “Much of recycling is an elaborate charade,” he writes in the chapter about solutions.

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