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Sailing Holidays 2019 - TOP

Remote Island chain has few people - but hundreds of millions of pieces of plastic

by Christopher Joyce 23 May 23:29 UTC
Debris blankets the north side of one of the Cocos Keeling Islands in the Indian Ocean. Researchers found a huge amount of plastic both onshore and buried in the sand. © Silke Stuckenbrock

When a marine biologist from Australia traveled to a remote string of islands in the Indian Ocean to see how much plastic waste had washed up on the beaches, here's just part of what she found: "373,000 toothbrushes and around 975,000 shoes, largely flip-flops," says Jennifer Lavers of the University of Tasmania in Australia.

And that's only what was on the surface.

The Cocos Keeling Islands make up barely six square miles of land, about 1,300 miles off the northwest coast of Australia. It was a good place to measure plastic waste because almost no one lives there. That meant the plastic debris there wasn't local it floated in and no one was picking it up. It gave Lavers a good notion of just how much was bobbing around the ocean.

To read more please go to the original article.

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