On opposite sides of the Pacific Ocean, Doug Woodring and Billy Dutton are attacking the same problem – how to save our oceans from becoming plasticized.

With Woodring hosting his annual Clean Half Extreme Open Water Swim, Dutton is aligning himself with environmentalists along the west coast of California including Dr. Marcus Eriksen.

While Woodring gave a presentation at Tedx in Hong Kong (see below), Dr. Eriksen gave a remarkably similar talk at Marina del Rey’s California Yacht Club in collaboration with Dutton.

Woodring with Project Kaisei and Dr. Eriksen of 5Gyres.org both have trawled, researched and analyzed not only the gyres (accumulation zones of marine debris), but also throughout the Pacific Ocean. During Dr. Eriksen’s recent 41 hours of observation in the Pacific Ocean, he found 98% of the ocean debris was plastic. “When people say, ‘Throw it away’ the problem is that our ocean are not away. Small flecks of plastic are all over our oceans. There are no brands, products, cities or nations to specifically blame. When you throw something away in Los Angeles and it makes its way to the ocean, it may float for one year before it hits Hawaii. It will take that piece of plastic 3 years to hit Japan, but it doesn’t land. It just floats to these accumulation zones – gyres – in the ocean. Can we turn back our plasticized world?

Fish come to the surface to feed at night and they eat these tiny flecks of plastic. We have done research and have found a significant percentage of fish have an abundance of plastic inside their bodies. Plastic is oil…and it is constantly pouring into the oceans. The solution will be upstream, in the consumer’s hands. Our hands.”

Copyright © 2012 by Open Water Source