The Great Pacific Garbage Patch is a collection of marine debris in the North Pacific Ocean. Marine debris is litter that ends up in oceans, seas, and other large bodies of water.
The Great Pacific Garbage Patch, also known as the Pacific trash vortex, spans waters from the West Coast of North America to Japan. The patch is actually comprised of the Western Garbage Patch, located near Japan, and the Eastern Garbage Patch, located between the U.S. states of Hawaii and California.
The National Geographic Society has published educational materials appropriate for grades 4-12 to help school age children understand the impact of plastics on our environment. Follow the link below to discover and use these materials.
Worldwide Garbage Patches
The Great Pacific Garbage Patch is not the only marine trash vortex—it’s just the biggest. The Atlantic and Indian Oceans both have trash vortexes. Even shipping routes in smaller bodies of water, such as the North Sea, are developing garbage patches.
Most of the plastic found in the Great Pacific Garbage Patch started on land in the hands of humans.
Please follow this link to find out how you can play your part to prevent plastic pollution in our oceans.