Plastic Bags Accumulating in the Great Pacific Garbage Patch
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Between Asia and North America is the Great Pacific Garbage Patch, which is about twice the size of continental United States. Located inside the North Pacific Gyre, the Great Pacific Garbage Patch is filled with at least 100,000,000 tons of micro plastics, marine debris, and fishing gear. A gyre is essentially a natural vortex in the ocean. Lots of the trash we do not throw away often ends up in the Great Pacific Garbage Patch by wind and ocean currents. The trash is severely harming the marine ecosystems of living things. Plastics leach Bisphenol A, a deathly chemical.
Our world's oceans are the largest ecosystems and the largest support for life. We need oceans to survive. 97% of our water are in oceans , and oceans generate half our oxygen that we use to breathe. Oceans are also essential to our security and economy.
80% of the garbage comes from land, and 50% is plastic. In order to reduce the amount of garbage going into the gyre, the government should require stores to charge a price for plastic bags. Less people using plastic bags will result in the less littering of these plastic bags. Charging plastic bags will encourage consumers to use reusable bags when shopping. Many other locations in the United States are already charging fees for plastic bags. Washington D.C. has a five cent fee on plastic bags. California has 67 different ordinances on 88 municipalities that prohibit or charge plastic bags. Texas has 9 different ordinances covering 9 municipalities. Washington State has 11 ordinances covering 11 municipalities. Countries such as Denmark and Bulgaria charge taxes on plastic bags, too. We must do our best, as humans, to prevent the destruction of our ocean systems.
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