Pollution will be one of the lasting legacies of our era. You can look no further than Henderson Island, an atoll in the Pacific, for proof of that.
Henderson Island is a tiny chunk of land with no human inhabitants. In a sense, you could argue that humans have left it mostly untouched. And yet, our touch is still present on this pristine island.
Researchers have concluded that more than 3,500 pieces of trash wash up on the island every day, adding to the 38 million pieces of ocean-moved garbage already present on the island. Almost all of this trash is plastic.
“The quantity of plastic there is truly alarming,” Jennifer Lavers, a co-author of the report, said in an interview with the Associated Press. “It’s both beautiful and terrifying.”
Images like the one above, provided by Lavers, shows the variety of trash that washes up on the island, anything from plastic nets, helmets, water bottles, and even plastic garden planting buckets.
These pieces of plastic travel thousands upon thousands of miles through the South Pacific Gyre, a central point where tons of plastic trash accumulate.
Researchers spent a total of three months researching Henderson Island in 2015, analyzing the garbage. Most of the trash was found to come fro industrialized countries around the Pacific rim as well as Europe.
If there isn’t real action soon, the fate of Henderson Island could be seen around the world.
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