“Plastic pollution is not an ocean, river, lake or stream problem, it’s a people problem. We must do our part to discourage everyone from trashing our waterways with plastic bottles, bags, cups, utensils and plates,” says Lenny Shabes, CEO and founder of the American Sailing Association. “Starting now, we want everyone out on a boat to clean up trash wherever and whenever they see it. If we all do our part, we can make a difference by raising awareness to help stop this tidal wave of plastic threatening all of us.”
Participants are encouraged to post photos of picking up trash to social media
Why Should You Care About Plastic Pollution?
The Great Pacific Garbage Patch is an 80,000-ton beast of debris lurking in the Pacific Ocean between Hawaii and California. It has grown to twice the size of Texas. There are five such plastic islands polluting oceans throughout the globe, threatening wildlife and ultimately the food we eat.
As the plastic breaks up into tiny pieces, birds and fish think it’s food and eat it. Their bellies get full and they ultimately starve themselves to death, killing our food supply. Some scientists say this poisoning of the food chain ultimately poses a threat to all of us, pointing to links between plastic pollution and cancer, among other illnesses.
Eighteen billion pounds of plastic waste blows into the ocean each year. That’s the equivalent of five grocery bags of plastic trash sitting on every foot of coastline around the world.