Marine Debris office of Response and Restoration has great resources on learning about debris!
Here is a list of some frequently asked questions (and links to answers):
(ABOVE: Marine Debris Tracker)
The Mobile App Marine Debris Tracker originated in 2010 from a joint partnership of the NOAA Marine Debris Program and the Southeast Atlantic Marine Debris Initiative (SEA-MDI), located within the College of Engineering at the University of Georgia.
A primary goal of SEA-MDI was to use innovative technologies and unique expertise to add culturally relevant outreach tools and information to the NOAA Marine Debris Program.
Marine Debris Tracker is a product of this initiative. Their goal is to spread awareness of marine debris, as well as serve as an easy to use and simple tool for marine debris data collection. In 2015, funding from 11th Hour Racing (A Program of The Schmidt Family Foundation) is allowed them to expand the tracker as a culturally relevant outreach and data collection tool for the sailing community.
Check out Marine Debris online for more information and to start geotagging litter!
CEF FFT: This could be a very useful tool for cleanup crews to use to arrange events knowing ahead of time there is something to clean.
4Ocean is an organization of teams that help clean the ocean and beaches around the world. You can donate to their cause by purchasing a bracelet and for each their ocean and coastal teams will collect a pound of trash. So far they have already collected over 50,ooolbs worldwide!
They explain how beach cleanups are an effective way to prevent trash from entering the ocean and that offshore cleanups are an effective way to remove trash that has already entered the ocean.
To donate, find out more info and how to become a 4Ocean ambassador visit their webpage at 4Ocean.com
Today at 8:00pm CET (11:00am PST) Boyan Slat just announced the next phase of development for his organization “The Ocean Cleanup”.
“Why go after the plastic, if the plastic can come to you?” was Slat’s original rhetorical motto that summed up their initial netting system to clean the gyres of plastic waste.
For the next phase, he shared a new motto: “To catch the plastic, act like the plastic.”
Unlike the original design which involved a larger netting system that required them to anchor the nets to the ocean bed some 4 kilometers down with mixed subterranean stability (this proved to be the most challenging step as well), their new design involves more modular fleet of nets which are anchored in mid-ocean drift. They were able to test the force and flow of water at different depths and found that the netting system only needed to be drastically slowed from drift, not completely halted. For this reason, weights that would slow the netting down to a rate that plastic still could be collected would be optimal for both the efficiency of implementation as well as the gradual development of a fleet of nets based on a budgetary standpoint.
Oddly enough, this drift technology seems to work even more in our favor than we expected. Slat stated that we need to act like plastic. By this he means that the technology to clean the plastic should be akin to the behavior of the plastic itself in the ocean. He also explains how after the fleet of nets is set up, the netting system should be able to not only gather the plastic but also over time the drifting nets themselves will be gradually gathered together by the current.
For more information visit their website The Ocean Cleanup!
“Our mission is to protect the ocean.” (Rozalia Project)
Rozalia Project has an amazing collection of efforts being brought together to tackle pollution.
One cool tool they use for volunteer cleanups is their Rozalia Project Marine Debris Data Card to keep tabs on what trash has been collected.
Here is an excerpt from Rozalia Project’s mission statement:
The next phase for Boyan Slat (CEO and Founder) and his team at The Ocean Cleanup is getting near.
On Thursday May 11th, The Ocean Cleanup will be sharing a very special announcement with the world. Discover what they’ve been working on for the past two years, and what will be happening next. The unveiling event will take place at the spectacular “Werkspoorkathedraal” in Utrecht, The Netherlands, and will be streamed LIVE on their webpage at 8.00pm CET / 2.00pm EST.
Check out source The Ocean Clean Up for more info and an unveiling teaser video of what’s to come!
The last time the ocean was as acidic as it is now was 50 million years ago and the change occurred over millennia, not over decades. We now know that the oceans cannot take infinite abuse.
The Wendy Schmidt Ocean Health XPRIZE is a 2 year competition worth $2 million dollars for team to create radical breakthroughs in measurement technology, namely ocean acidification (pH levels). The point of the competition is to accurately measure acidification for the first time. This alerts people to the fact that we’ve got a problem that is so important that someone is willing to put up private resources as a reward. One of the goals of this prize is to bring more instruments to the problem. There has been an ongoing dearth of data on the state of the health of the oceans. This is an opportunity to start fresh with new tools to share with the public what is really going on.
Measuring the pH in the oceans efficiently and effectively is no easy task. It isn’t only a challenge of accurate measurement but also the depth with which the sensors are able to sink and still perform.
Check out the source link at xprize.org for a video and to find out which team won the prize!
The ocean is critical for the planet and all living species. If competitions like this bring passionate endeavoring people together to make leaps, then what an amazing thing it would be for more such innovation-driven events to emerge.
A group of researchers at the Argonne National Laboratory have developed a sponge that will collect oil from bodies of water, which could improve how harbors and ports are cleaned, as well as how oil spills are managed.
“The Oleo Sponge offers a set of possibilities that, as far as we know, are unprecedented,” said co-inventor Seth Darling, a scientist with Argonne’s Center for Nanoscale Materials and a fellow of the University of Chicago’s Institute for Molecular Engineering.
At tests at a giant seawater tank in New Jersey called Ohmsett, the National Oil Spill Response Research & Renewable Energy Test Facility, the Oleo Sponge successfully collected diesel and crude oil from both below and on the water surface.
“The material is extremely sturdy. We’ve run dozens to hundreds of tests, wringing it out each time, and we have yet to see it break down at all,” according to Darling.
The team is actively looking to commercialize the material; those interested in licensing the technology or collaborating with the laboratory on further development may contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
For more info and a video demonstration visit Argonne’s website here!
Pollution is no joke and the whole world involved is listening.
The reports reveal that 570,000 of children’s deaths each year are attributed to respiratory infections, like pneumonia, caused by both indoor and outdoor air pollution, as well as second-hand smoke. Additionally, 270,000 children a year die in their first month from conditions due to air pollution and lack of sanitation, according to the WHO.
“A polluted environment is a deadly one — particularly for young children,” Dr. Margaret Chan, director-general of WHO, said in a press release. “Their developing organs and immune systems, and smaller bodies and airways, make them especially vulnerable to dirty air and water.”
In addition to the deaths, the WHO found that 11–14% of younger children worldwide report asthma symptoms and nearly half (an estimated 44%) of those cases result from the environmental factors.
(Visit the source article on Fortune for more information!)
(Photo credit: Witch Kiki)
When engineers faced resistance from residents in Denmark over plans to build wind turbines on the Nordic country’s flat farmland, they found a better locale: the sea. The offshore wind farm, the world’s first, had just 11 turbines and could power about 3,000 homes.
That project now looks like a minnow compared with the whales that sprawl for miles across the seas of Northern Europe.
Off this venerable British port city, a Danish company, Dong Energy, is installing 32 turbines that stretch 600 feet high. Each turbine produces more power than that first facility.
It is precisely the size, both of the projects and the profits they can bring, that has grabbed the attention of financial institutions, money managers and private equity funds, like the investment bank Goldman Sachs, as well as wealthy individuals like the owner of the Danish toymaker Lego. As the technology has improved and demand for renewable energy has risen, costs have fallen.